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Baltic Exchange releases weekly shipping market report

April 29, 2024

Abstract : The Baltic Exchange has published its weekly report of the dry and tanker markets for April 22-26, 2024.

BEIJING, April 29 (Xinhua) -- The Baltic Exchange has published its weekly report of the dry and tanker markets for April 22-26, 2024 as below:


The Capesize market endured a challenging week, marked by persistent negativity across both the Pacific and Atlantic regions. The week commenced sluggishly, with the BCI 5TC dropping by $1,133 on Monday, setting a negative tone. Conditions generally deteriorated in both regions, with decreased rates and limited activity, reflecting softer market sentiment. However, the level of activity picked up during the course of the week, particularly in the Pacific, with all of the miners active, although the negative trend continued, albeit with a slight slowing in the rate of decline. Weakness in the Atlantic was evident, with subdued sentiment from south Brazil and the north Atlantic contributing to the overall downtrend, with only sporadic upticks of activity towards the end of the week. As the week draws to a close, the BCI 5TC settled at $18,012, reflecting a loss of $4,398 over the course of the week.


The Panamax market began the week in a bullish mood continuing the firm sentiment carrying on from the back of last week's push. EC South America lacked any momentum all week, and despite firmer rates exchanged for early arrivals the P6 window in general remained widely gapped and mostly flat. The north Atlantic saw a real mix, with some trans-Atlantic voyage cargoes returning super cheap time charter equivalents. Front haul runs overall remained steady, talk of an 80,000dwt delivery Continent agreed $25,500 for a trip via US Gulf redelivery Far East. Similarly in Asia, talk of some support seen ex NoPac for grains and Australia minerals, thus giving some impetus to the market mid-week $15,500 agreed several times for 82,000dwt types delivery China for Nopac round trips. Period activity remained prevalent with a host of deals around the $19,000 mark agreed for short period up to 1 year basis delivery Far East. 


A solid week for the sector overall although as the week ended some felt that a ceiling had been reached from the US Gulf and south Atlantic arenas. From Asia, there was a good amount of fresh enquiry from Southeast Asia with a plentiful supply of Indonesian coal and nickel ore cargoes. With the upcoming holidays in China, it remains to be seen if this moment will continue. From the Atlantic, a 63,000dwt was seen fixed delivery east coast South America for a trip to China in the mid $18,000s plus mid $800,000s ballast bonus. Elsewhere, a 63,000dwt fixed delivery Spain via the north Continent to the east Mediterranean at $18,500. In Asia, a 63,000dwt fixed delivery Ceba trip with coal via Indonesia redelivery Southeast Asia at $24,000. Further north, an ultramax fixed delivery China for a backhaul to the Caribbean at $16,000 for the first 65 days and $21,000 thereafter. Period activity remained buoyant, a 63,000dwt open Jebel Ali fixing 11 to 13 months worldwide trading at $17,500. A 58,000dwt open in the US Gulf fixed 5 to 7 months redelivery Atlantic at $16,000. 


Visible activity was muted across the Handysize sector, with a mixed week in the Atlantic as the Pacific showed more promise. In the Mediterranean, cargo availability has reduced, and negative sentiment has crept into the region, with a 37,000dwt fixing from the Turkish Mediterranean to the US Gulf in the mid-teens and another 37,000dwt fixed passing Cape Matapan via Iskenderun to the Caribbean with a cargo of clinker at $14,000 example of the lower levels. Whilst pressure remained on Owners in the US Gulf, a 33,000dwt fixed from Port Arthur to east coast Mexico with petcoke at $17,500 and 38,000dwt fixed from Savannah to the Continent with wood pellets at $12,000. Asia saw continued positivity with improving cargo availability, a 37,000dwt fixed from Putain via Australia to China at $13,000 and a 38,000dwt fixing from Maptaphut via Southeast Asia to north China at $14,000, whilst a 34,000 in north China fixed a trip to Southeast Asia at $12,000. 



In the MEG this week LR2 freight plateaued after last week's positive resurgence. The TC1 rate for 75kt MEG/Japan dipped a modest three points to WS208 and the 90kt MEG/UK-Continent TC20 voyage went from $6.45 million to $6.33 million.

West of Suez, Mediterranean/East LR2’s improved a little with the TC15 index adding $33,000 to its value up to $3.53 million.


In the MEG, LR1 freight levels were also relatively flat. The 55kt MEG/Japan index of TC5 hovered around the WS230's to WS240's. The 65kt MEG/UK-Continent of TC8 also floated around the high $4 million's with it currently pegged at $4.95 million.  

On the UK-Continent, the 60kt ARA/West Africa was significantly busier this week, regrettably for owners this did not stop the TC16 index dropping from WS185 to WS181.


MR's in the MEG showed strong firming for the second week on week. The TC17 35kt MEG/East Africa index shot up 103 points to WS413 with the Baltic TCE for the run improving by 48% to over $50,000 per day round trip.

On the UK-Continent MR’s had another week of overbearing downward pressure. The 37kt ARA/US-Atlantic coast of TC2 dropped another ten points across the week to WS169. The TC19 run (37kt ARA/West Africa) the index also dropped 20 points to WS190. The Baltic round trips for the runs are now around $17,000 and $21,000 per day respectively.  

USG MR's have had another hard week with no sign of recent downward trajectory stopping. TC14 (38kt US-Gulf/UK-Continent) came off another 12 points down to WS136. The 38kt US Gulf/Brazil on TC18 went from WS236 to WS218 and the 38kt US-Gulf/Caribbean of TC21 dropped by 13% across the week to $569,000.  


In the Mediterranean, 30kt Cross Mediterranean (TC6) recorrected down after last week's freight spike, the index lost 54 points to WS242

Up in north west Europe, the TC23 30kt Cross UK-Continent dipped to WS223 (-23).


The market stagnated this week. The rate for 270,000 mt Middle East Gulf to China remained at just below WS60 which corresponds to a daily round-trip TCE of about $35,700 basis the Baltic Exchange's vessel description.

In the Atlantic market, the 260,000 mt West Africa/China trip eased by another point to WS61.33 which shows a round voyage TCE of around $38,200 per day. The rate for 270,000 mt US Gulf/China is assessed $35,000 lower at $8,580,000 translating into a round-trip daily TCE of $41,090.


The Suezmax market in West Africa remains soft with the 130,000 mt Nigeria/UK Continent trip losing 2.5 points during the week to WS102.61 (a daily round-trip TCE of $37,791). In the Mediterranean and Black Sea region the rate stuck at the WS114-115 level for the 135,000 mt CPC/Mediterranean trip (showing a daily TCE of about $42,000 round-trip). In the Middle East, the rate for 140,000 mt Middle East Gulf to the Mediterranean (via the Suez Canal) was assessed two points lower at just below WS95.


In the North Sea, the rate for the 80,000 mt Cross-UK Continent eased 1.5 points to WS141.07 (a daily round-trip TCE of $40,434 basis Hound Point to Wilhelmshaven).

In the Mediterranean market the rate for 80,000 mt Cross-Mediterranean has steadied at the WS184-185 level (basis Ceyhan to Lavera, that shows a daily round trip TCE of about $55,600).

Across the Atlantic, the Stateside market has continued to soften with the rate for 70,000 mt east coast Mexico/US Gulf (TD26) having lost 15 points to WS161.25 (a daily TCE of $34,981 round trip) and the rate for 70,000 mt Covenas/US Gulf (TD9) has also been reduced by 15 points to WS154.69 (a round-trip TCE of $30,699 per day). The rate for the trans-Atlantic route of 70,000 mt US Gulf/UK Continent (TD25) conversely gained three points to WS179.72 (a round trip TCE basis Houston/Rotterdam of $41,331 per day).


A continued flat LNG spot market has done little to sway rates for either the 160cbm or the 174cbm indices. The delta between the two ships now has narrowed significantly with around $13,000 per day the norm for a premium on the 2-stroke. Little reported on fixtures with spot, though some enquiry in the market has kept chins wagging trying to see what levels or indeed which ship type charterers look to take.

Rates wise the 174 BLNG1 lost a few hundred dollars to a close of $46,980 (a drop of $695) while the BLNG1 on the 160 gained $1,713 to a finish of $34,419. BLNG2 Houston-Continent on the 174 fell nearly $100 to a finish of $44,787 while the 160 remained quite flat losing $207 to a finish of $32,748. The biggest mover of the week for BLNG was the Houston-Japan BLNG3 where the 174 fell by $3,311 to $49,758 while the 160 lost $807 to a close of $38,189.

For LNG the spot has been looked at with unease from owners where rates remain low, but it's a different story on the shorter period term where 6-month charter rates rose by $10,600 to $74,600 catching up on 1-year terms at $78,200. The 3-year periods and above remain relatively unattractive for many owners now and we published them with a slight rise and a close of $81,900.


A weak week from the Middle East with freight rates dropping by $4.429 on BLPG1 Ras Tanura-Chiba, there was a report at the end of the week that one charterer managed to fix a ship sub $60 but that other owners with tonnage around are holding out for at least $60 or above. Few cargoes working and a tonnage list that's quite healthy means rates are still on the softer side. We closed at $60.571 with a TCE earning equivalent of $39,063.

The Atlantic market fared better than in the East with the routes ending, if only marginally, positively. BLPG2 Houston-Chiba finished up 80 cents at $70 and a TCE equivalent of $71,059, while BLPG3 the most active route of the week gained $3 to finish at $128 and a TCE earning equivalent of $52,457. One broker reported several ships open for May and with slim cargo availability there could be waiting time, and therefore a softening of rates for the remainder of May cargoes, while June fixing is already underway.

Headquartered in London and a subsidiary of the Singapore Exchange (SGX), the Baltic Exchange publishes a range of indices and assessments which provide an accurate and independent benchmark of the cost of transporting commodities and goods by sea. These include the Baltic Dry Index (BDI), the dry bulk shipping industry's best known indicator. Published daily since 1985, this provides a snapshot of the daily spot market earnings of capesize, panamax and supramax vessel types on the world's key trading routes.

BDI - BDI 280423 260424.png

Chart shows Baltic Dry Index (BDI) during April 28, 2023 to April 26, 2024

BFABDI_C-FFA 260124 161125.jpg

Baltic Forward Assessment for BDI

In March 2018 the BDI was re-weighted and is published using the following ratios of time charter assessments: 40 percent capesize, 30 percent panamax and 30 percent supramax. The information is provided by a panel of international shipbrokers.

(Source: The Baltic Exchange, edited by Niu Huizhe with Xinhua Silk Road,

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Keyword: International Shipping Centers Development Index Baltic Exchange

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