Rates flip-flopped around five cents up or five cents down and this about sums up the capesize market this week. The key West Australia/China run nudged up to $3.00 earlier this week and slipped back to $2.90-95 for 20-24 March positions. Timecharter rates remained in the doldrums hovering around $2,000 to $3,000 daily depending on the vessel involved. The rate from Saldanha to Qingdao stood at $4.20 this week but with essentially little action and just a dollar more paid for a ship to load a 15-25 March cargo from Tubarao to Qingdao. However Vale was reported to have fixed two newcastlemaxes each for three consecutive voyages commencing May with a Japanese owner agreeing $6.55 and another unnamed owner $6.75.
There remained a very long list of tonnage in the north Atlantic chasing very few cargoes. Little was reported fixed this week and one of the few deals emerging still remained a hotch-potch of conjecture. Some said a low $2.70 was concluded for a Bolivar/Rotterdam 160,000 tonne 10% coal cargo, but this business was reportedly fixed on timecharter and the rate equated to more than the BCI C7 value earlier this week.
South American grain cargoes once again dominated activity and helped underpin rates in many areas of the market. The emphasis this week was largely on ships loading April cargoes with much of the front-haul business for March now covered. Rates for the well described kamsarmaxes climbed to the high $6,000 daily and the high $100,000s bonus. Ships too were able to secure rates dop in the Indian Ocean area and an eco kamsarmax made a stronger $5,700 daily from Singapore. North Atlantic has seen increased cargo volumes, particularly coal, but as yet rates remained largely at unchanged levels. US Gulf activity remained very slow both front-haul and transatlantic.
In the East, rates have improved and closed the week on a steady note with rates now in some cases over $4,000 daily for panamaxes dop China for NoPac round voyages. There has been an increase in NoPac grain movements and more coal from Australia. Period talk included rumours of a 2010 built 82,000 tonner open Vietnam fixing for 12/15 months trading at $5,500 daily, but this was not confirmed.
At the risk of sounding repetitive, it has been another good week for supramax owners with a daily increase on the BDI and nearly all individual routes witnessing a positive change. Rates in both theatres tended to show an increase on those last achieved with some talk about period fixtures, although very sketchy for now with details unavailable for reporting. Overall brokers suggested more business being quoted with some areas now having a lack of prompt vessels.
The top rate of the week went to a 63,500 dwt vessel fixing delivery Barranquilla trip Karachi at $10,500 daily. A 56,526 dwt 2013 built fixed delivery to the US Gulf trip Singapore-Japan at $8,500 daily while a Mitsui 56 fixed the same trip at $8,300 daily. Brokers reported a Tess 52 was fixed delivery Itaqui trip Algeria at $5,000 daily while a larger cousin 61,208 dwt secured something in the low/mid $6,000s for Recalada trip Mediterranean with other similar sizes fixing just below $6,000 per day. Sources advised trips from east coast South America to Far East this week going in the region of $7,000 daily plus $70,000 ballast bonus. Additionally a good level was achieved for a Dolphin type giving delivery Immingham trip India at $8,300 daily.
There were two reports of 45,000 dwt vessels fixed delivery CJK trip Singapore at $5,000 daily and the other delivery South Korea trip via CIS to Vietnam at $4,250 daily. An ultramax was linked to an Australian round voyage delivery Jakarta redelivery China at $4,500 daily. The Nighthawk 57,809 dwt built 2010 was not sleepy in fixing back haul into the Mediterranean with a Pohang delivery at $2,900 daily for the first 70 days and the balance at $4,000. Business with a Richards Bay delivery to Red Sea this week was paying $7,500 daily for a 55,418 dwt ship.
The Handysize market was in its usual mode of cannot report… however those which were reported showed an increase. A healthy $7,950 was linked to a 34,000 dwt delivery Continent trip via Baltic to Far East. One 35,000 dwt covered a trip from Santos to Tunisia at $6,250 with a 34,000 dwt securing $7,500 for Recalada trip Far East.
From Singapore there were reports of a 33,478 dwt vessel fixed trip via Kuantan to north China at $3,000 with brokers saying there was a definite increase of cargoes being discussed and hopes of further improvement. A 28,599 dwt 2000 handysize fixed delivery South Korea trip via CIS to Vietnam at 4,500 daily with coal.
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