Friday ended on an upbeat note after a week of rates in the East drifting lower. The volume of fixing had been significant on the West Australia/Qingdao run, but rates Thursday dipped to $5.05 or thereabout. Today the market turned up with rumours $5.20 was concluded for 16-20 July and some suggesting more.
Timecharter rates for 180,000 tonners were still showing healthier returns for owners than voyage business with a 179,700 tonner open Nantong fixing at $8,500 daily for a West Australia round.
Saldanha/Qingdao rates also dropped with Anglo American fixing a 20-30 June with a Japanese-controlled ship at $8.24. As the week closed out transatlantic rates firmed. There was little reported fixed today but negotiations were underway with the likelihood of rises on transatlantic run and over $7.00 the next done for Puerto Bolivar/Rotterdam. A 179,000 tonner open Hamburg was booked for a transatlantic round at $9,500 daily mid-week. Anglo American took a Japanese-controlled vessel from Acu to Imjuiden at $8.50.The Brazil/China rate was hovering around $12.00 to the low $12.00 range for Tubarao to Qingdao.
A tight supply of tonnage in the North Atlantic prompted a rise in rates with still cargoes there to be fixed. Charterers with cargoes into the US in some cases conceded fixing a couple of legs with an eco kamsarmax booked for two laden legs basis Ghent for a relatively long duration at $10,000daily. In the US Gulf too owners saw healthier numbers for trips to the East with an eco 79,000 tonner fixing aps South West Pass for a trip to the East at $19,000 daily. The pace from South America slowed with charterers pushing lower numbers but so far economical rates for the runs to the East appeared to be holding steady. A 76,600 tonner was booked for Santos delivery 23-28 July for the trip east at $12,250 daily plus a $225,000 bonus.
South America demand continued to underpin sentiment in the East with owners pushing for higher rates. Demand was evident from Southeast Asia with still significant coal demand from Indonesia. The NoPac and east coast Australia has been slower. A 75,000 tonner agreed $7,000 daily for CJK for an Indonesia/Japan run.
A rise in FFA activity stimulated demand for period ships particularly eco Kamsarmaxes. Charterers were said to be talking in the mid $7,000s daily with owners probably closer to $8,000 daily.
A week of relatively modest but steady gains within the Atlantic. In the US Gulf, a nice 2013 built 61,400 dwt ultramax was booked for a front-haul trip at close to $17,000 daily and a 2009 built 55,500 dwt ship was fixed for a similar run at $15,500 daily. In the South Atlantic, the market also looked more active where it was suggested that a ‘Tess 52’ type had been booked for a trip from Santos to India at about $11,500 daily + a ballast bonus of about $245,000. On this side, in the east Mediterranean, reports emerged of a 2013 built 61,400 dwt unit being fixed delivery Canakkale for a trip to Singapore-Japan at a better $11,000 daily.
Levels for Handysizes appeared to be on the move from South America with a number of voyage fixtures being concluded showing better timecharter returns. A 38,000 dwt was believed to have fixed grains on voyage from the Plate to Spain and France allegedly showing a timecharter equivalent of around $13,000 daily. In addition a 34,000 tonner was said to be closely working a trip from the Plate to the East around $13,000 daily although other reports suggested lower than this.
Handysizes also appeared to be tighter in the US Gulf with a 34,000 tonner rumoured to have gone for a trip with petcoke to Italy in the high $8,000s.
In the East, although the Indonesia coal trades seemed to be quieter than of late, there seemed to be sufficient alternative business for owners to push for improved rate ideas from the charterers. The North Pacific markets were also quiet, however, a 2006 built 55,600 dwt vessel open Yeosu was reported to have been fixed for a trip via Gladstone to the PG at $7,750 daily.
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