As the Chinese New Year festivities begin there was little celebrating for owners & operators of the big ships with rates still at record lows. Rates for the West Australia/China run dipped this week to $2.80-85 with Rio Tinto fixing 24 February onwards at the former and BHP Billiton the latter for 23 February. Timecharter rates were barely in the low $2,000 daily range for 180,000 tonners with a ship fixed from Huanghua for West Australia/China at $2,250 daily. However a very eco 179,000 tonner fixed this week for 6 February delivery CJK for a Brazil round in the mid/high $4,000s – a rate that reflects her consumption. A 177,000 tonner agreed prompt delivery China for 11 to 14 months trading at $5,200 daily.
Brazil rates were largely steady hovering around the mid-high $5.00s for cargoes from Tubarao to Qingdao. Transatlantic activity was sluggish with rates for Colombia/Rotterdam cargoes languishing just over the mid $3.00s. Timecharter rates for ships open Skaw-Passero to the East were little more than the mid $8,000 daily range.
South America grain shipments provided some stability for the market with pre Chinese holiday lifting rates. Kamsarmaxes were achieving rates around $6,500 daily plus a $150,000 bonus – if not more in some cases and owners too were able to negotiate deliveries basis Singapore with $4,500 daily paid for a 2005 built 75,000 tonner. There may be a pause in the market during the holidays but this current bout of trading has been the result of grain houses moving cargoes. The Chinese were said to have cargoes for March and many owners were taking the decision to ballast from the East rather than accept the current low rates on offer there. Some charterers were now said to be bidding tonnage $2,000 daily dop for NoPac rounds rather than pushing rates into the $1,000s. There has also been some period inquiry and 2014 built 81,000 tonner agreed retroactive delivery 27 January Singapore for four to seven months trading at $5,350 daily with Uniper (E.ON).
February started on a low and continued its downward momentum with the BDI recording a daily decrease along with the BSI and the BHSI.
However a busy week for supramaxes largely on the back of fixing prior to the Chinese New Year holidays.
In the Atlantic a Mitsui 56 went to a Danish charterer delivery east Mediterranean for a trip to the US Gulf in the region of $1,000 daily. A 63,000 dwt vessel took $7,000 daily for trip to the Far East with a Black Sea delivery with a smaller 56,000 dwt taking $6,500 daily for the same trip. This week Santos to Far East paid $7,150 daily plus $71,000 ballast bonus.
A European grain house fixed the Baltic Panther 53,100 dwt built 2009 delivery Santos-Paranagua trip Continent at $4,000 daily. One 64,000 dwt managed to secure $8,400 daily delivery US Gulf for a trip to the Singapore-Japan range but was suggested as a spot replacement. Similar trips only paid $7,000 with a 56,000 dwt. Bunge fixed a 63,150 dwt vessel for a trip from the US Gulf trip to north coast South America $5,350 daily.
A Tess 58 agreed $3,250 daily for a trip from Jorf Lasfar to West Africa while a scrap cargo from Baltic to eastern Mediterranean fixed at $4,250 with the 2007 built Navios Ulysses 55,728 dwt.
A 63,000 dwt ultramax fixed delivery Samarinda trip via Indonesia redelivery India at $3,900 daily while another 61,654 dwt ship covered $3,050 for the same trip but delivery Indonesia. A 55,564 dwt 2012 built secured $1,750 daily for a coal run from Indonesia to China. Further north, a 51,000 dwt was booked at $3,500 daily delivery Japan for trip PG. A couple of rare reports of business delivery PG – one to the US Gulf at $500 per day with a large supramax, maybe even an ultramax, and a 50,000 dwt accepting region $2,750 daily for a trip to Singapore-Japan.
Information on handysizes this week has been virtually non-existent with owners and brokers not wanting their low fixtures reported. From the Black Sea a 32,657 dwt 2010 built ship managed to fix delivery Canakkale trip via Black Sea to eastern Mediterranean at $3,500 daily.
A NoPac trip to Far East was fixed at $5,500 daily on a 37,000 dwt and an Australian round voyage paid $2,000 daily delivery Singapore with a 33,000 dwt vessel.
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