China devaluing the yuan swiftly on the heels of the long weekend break in Singapore caused some nervousness and owners/operators started chasing rates lower. On the key run West Australia/China the rate dropped to $5.80 – a fall of $1.45 in a week. However today rates appeared to have found a floor with one of the majors fixing at $5.95 and Solebay fixing a ship for 1-5 September at $6.00. The Saldanha Bay/Qingdao route also saw falling levels with an early September cargo booked at $10.00. Rates from Tubarao to Qingdao also dropped despite activity from Vale with the Brazilian producer booking four ships ranging from $13.95 to $14.30.
The mood switched too in the North Atlantic with charterers able to pick and choose tonnage. The Puerto Bolivar/Rotterdam rate dropped to $7.55 having hit a peak last week of $10.65, but today saw charterers talking low $8.00s on this run. Fronthaul cargoes were slow to surface but as the week drew to a close Rio Tinto took at least two ships from Seven Islands to Qingdao at $16.50 or possibly $17.00. With the market slipping timecharter activity went on hold although a 176,000 tonner open Rotterdam fixed and failed at $15,000 daily.
South America remained the driving force for Panamax tonnage with charterers still fixing ships from Brazil and Argentina to China. There were those expecting the pace to slow but some charterers have had to find replacements for ships falling out of position and there still appeared to be ongoing demand for September loaders.
A kamsarmax was rumoured booked for 7-12 September from east coast South America to the East at $13,500 daily plus a $350,000 bonus. Ships were still ballasting from the East which in turn was lending some support for those preferring to remain in the East. Added to this charterers were looking to source ships in the East for US Gulf cargoes with an 83,000 tonner open Japan fixing via the gulf back to the East earlier this week at $8,500 daily. Ships were starting to head off in ballast to the US Gulf. Australian rounds appeared to have steadied with rates for good kamsarmaxes holding around the low $7,000 daily range.
North Atlantic tonnage remained tight and details of business fixed were elusive but there was talk of a 75,000 tonner fixing from Liverpool via the Baltic to the East with fertilizers at $16,750 daily. There was also talk of a panamax fixing for a couple of laden legs within the Atlantic at $12,500 daily.
Another busy week all round for the Supramax and Handysize vessels, albeit a slow start with the holiday on Monday and last Friday in Singapore.
Accurate completed fixtures reported were definitely down on previous weeks Index for both sizes showing minimal overall changes.
Period fixtures reported show no real changes with the supramax sizes in the Middle East still achieving levels around $8,000/8,500 per day while a SPP type 58,519 dwt built 2012 concluded about 4/6 months in the region $13,500 daily with a US Gulf delivery. Handysize reports were still sketchy but there was talk of Atlantic period in the region $8,000 to $9,000 daily levels.
A 35,510 dwt built 2015 fixed delivery Cebu for four to six months at $6,700 daily. In addition a 35,130 dwt 2011 built handy fixed delivery South Africa for four to six months at $8,000 daily.
Levels in the Atlantic for supramaxes remained in owners’ favour with a continued flow of business quoted but some brokers said it did not seem as active as previous weeks. A 57,089 dwt vessel fixed delivery Mersin via the Black Sea to South Africa at $11,350 per day and a 48,893 dwt vessel doing the same trade at $10,800 daily. Depending on redelivery US Gulf supramaxes were earning between $16,000 to $20,000 per day.
Rates in the Far East still cannot compare with the Atlantic. A 53,125 dwt vessel secured $6,000 per day for a trip delivery South Korea to Continent-Meditarranean. With a 58,000 dwt 2012 built fixed delivery Ningbo 18 Aug for a trip to West India at $8,500 daily.
Handysize information remained at a premium with owners and charterers reluctant to share. This week a 24,000 dwt vessel fixed Black Sea to China at $11,400 daily. A 38,000 dwt concluding a trip to West Africa via north France with delivery Antwerp at $12,000 per day. From west coast India a 29,000 dwt ship accepting $2,200 daily for a trip from Kandla to Thailand.
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