There has been no positive news for VLCC owners with rates in the Middle East Gulf for 270,000 tonnes to China hovering around WS 38, while going west, 280,000 tonnes cape/cape to US Gulf dropped 1.5 points to WS 17.5. West Africa to China held at WS 41.5 for 260,000 tonnes cargo. Crude from Hound Point to South Korea went at a steady US$3.7 million. In the Caribbean, Petrochina paid US$3.125 million to Singapore and Essar fixed a run to Vadinar at US$2.65 million. IOC fixed from EC Mexico to Paradip at US$2.9 million.
West Africa rates fell 2.5 points to WS 52.5 for 130,000 tonnes to Europe. Repsol paid WS 55 for Sankofa load, but with minimal port costs and a low flat rate brokers feel this is a less attractive voyage and likely to command a premium. Black Sea rates fell two points to around WS 67.5 for 135,000 tonnes. In the Mediterranean, Repsol paid WS 52.5 for 140,000 tonnes from Sidi Kerir to Spain while ENOC fixed 130,000 tonnes for a longer Arzew/Philadelphia run at WS 41.25 albeit on 2002 built tonnage.
Cross Med market for 80,000 tonnes showed signs of life with rates firming 15 points to WS 102.5 with WS 105 agreed for Libya load. Black Sea was fixed at WS 95 with potential to firm further. It was an uneventful week in the north as Baltic rates remained steady at WS 70 basis 100,000 tonnes and the 80,000 tonnes cross North Sea market was unchanged at WS 90.
The 70,000 tonnes Caribbean/upcoast market weakened 2.5-5 points before recovering back to close to WS 110 level.
The market for 55,000 tonnes from ARA held at WS 102.5/105 level, with Mediterranean load reportedly fixed at WS 100.
The LR1 market has continued to firm with rates for 55,000 tonnes from Middle East Gulf to Japan nudging WS 115 up around 5-7.5 points and LR2s have likewise improved from WS 85 to WS 100 basis 75,000 tonnes cargo.
In the 37,000 tonnes Cont/USAC trade, a volatile week saw rates fall 15 points to WS 140, before regaining lost ground to jump back up to WS 155 and a prompt loader is said to have achieved WS 160. The 38,000 tonnes backhaul trade from US Gulf/UK-Continent initially dropped 12.5 points to WS 87.5 before returning back to WS 100 level.
For daily tanker market assessments from the Baltic Exchange please visit www.balticexchange.com/market-information/