Yet another depressing week for capesizes with rates slipping again in the East and in the Atlantic. Too many ships in the East continued to weigh on the market and although some of the majors have been taking ships for West Australia, each has been at successively lower rates. As the week closed out the West Australia/Qingdao rate stood at $4.15 for 170,000-tonnes 10% for 11 February eta. A 178,000 tonner open Kemen reportedly went at a rate in the mid $4,000 daily range for a trip via West Australia to China. Period rates similarly were at very low levels with a 176,000 tonner open Qingdao fixing at $7,500 daily for three to six months trading.
There has been little activity from Brazil to China with rates reportedly barely holding over $11.00. Further north rates were relatively firmer with a 177,000 dwt vessel open Lisbon fixing for a trip via the US East Coast to South Korea at $16,500 daily. A 179,000 tonner earlier agreed $11,000 daily for a quick round from Immingham via Narvik to Hamburg.
Fronthaul business fixed with no ballast bonuses from the US Gulf to the East shocked the market this week. There were mitigating circumstances – early committed ships needing to go east and in one instance for drydock. A major grain house took two ships, a 76,000 tonner for early February at $10,000 daily and a 74,000 tonner (spot) for slightly later dates at $9,750 daily. Cargoes in the US Gulf for February, especially grain, were in short supply. From South America rates were just hovering around $11,000 daily plus a $100,000 bonus for LMEs going east with the majority of these coming from the East. Transtlantic activity has been confined to coal cargoes from the US to Europe with rates dropping almost daily. A 73,000-tonne 10% coal cargo fixed from Norfolk to Dunkirk east at $8.30.
In the East, dop was now rare and with NoPac cargoes in short supply it remained coal business to India that helped absorb at least some of the long list of ships. Sources said owners were asking $4,000 daily and fixing substantially below these numbers. A 74,000 tonner fixed from Japan for a trip via Australia to the Persian Gulf at $3,500 daily.
Another very tough week for the owners as the market in all areas continued to crumble. Activity was limited in the US Gulf although a nice 61,400 dwt 2011 built ‘ultra’ type open US Atlantic was paid a relatively encouraging $12,500 daily for a trip to the east Mediterranean by a charterer who had an early position to cover. On this side, a 2006 built 56,000 dwt vessel was booked for a trip from the Spanish Mediterranean to West Africa at around $6,000 daily.
Handysizes remain under pressure in the Atlantic, although there was talk a 30,000 tonner obtained over $8000 daily for a trip from the Baltic to the Mediterranean, while from the Black Sea a 32,000 dwt fixed a trip to the eastern Med in the low $5,000’s. Transatlantic activity includes a 32,000 tonner, open US East Coast agreed $6,000 daily for a trip to the Continent.
In the East, earlier in the week, a 2005 built 56,000 dwt ‘Mitsui’ type was reported to have been booked delivery Singapore for a trip via Indonesia to Thailand at around $5,000 daily. Back-haul business was if anything paying at least as well, as reports emerged of a 2008 built 58,760 dwt unit open south Japan being fixed delivery aps north China for a trip back to the Mediterranean at around $5,500 daily. Handysizes in Asia continue to find the going hard, with talk of good 28,000’s fixing around $4,000 for trips via Indonesia. A 34,000 tonner in Thailand fixed a trip to West Africa at $7,000 daily, which on the face of it a decent level.
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