January 27, 2020 / 2:24 PM / a month ago

Baltic index falls to over three-year low on weaker vessel rates

Jan 27 (Reuters) - The Baltic Exchange’s main sea freight index fell to its lowest level since April 2016, dragged down by lower vessels rates across categories.

* The Baltic index, which tracks rates for capesize, panamax and supramax vessels ferrying dry bulk commodities, dropped 11 points, or 2.0%, to 546 — its lowest in over 3 years.

* The capesize index fell 30 points, or 18.2%, to 135.

* The index registered its 32nd consecutive session of losses, touching its lowest level since April 3 last year.

* Average daily earnings for capesizes, which typically transport 170,000-180,000 tonne cargoes including iron ore and coal, fell $140 to $4,632.

* “The dry bulk shipping market will soften in the first quarter of 2020 before rebounding due to growth in Brazilian exports and very low fleet growth,” Randy Giveans, vice-president, equity research at Jefferies said in a note.

* The panamax index fell 18 points, or 2.6%, to 673.

* Average daily earnings for panamaxes, which usually carry coal or grain cargoes of about 60,000 tonnes to 70,000 tonnes, dropped $162 to $6,054.

* The supramax index shed 1 point to 542. (Reporting by Anjishnu Mondal in Bengaluru; Editing by Vinay Dwivedi)

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