An uninspiring week for owners saw rates flat at WS 37 for 270,000mt from the Middle East Gulf to China. Going west, the market was steady at WS 18 Cape to Cape for 280,000mt to the US Gulf. West Africa to China basis 260,000mt dipped two points to WS 38. Loop to China was fixed at $4.5 million.
Owners’ resistance in West Africa bore dividends as a West Africa east run went at WS 80 basis 130,000mt and Cepsa paid WS 65 to Spain, up from WS 60 at end of last week, although there is a slightly softer sentiment in the market. Black Sea rates were hovering between WS 77.5 to 80 region for 135,000mt cargo.
In the Mediterranean, a busy week saw rates for 80,000mt from Ceyhan gain over 20 points to WS 105 region, with the Black Sea now fixing at WS 115 compared to WS 80 a week ago. In the Baltic, the market for 100,000mt has been hovering at WS 90, with WS 95 agreed where short options are required. There is now talk of WS 107.5 being done. The 80,000mt cross-North Sea trade firmed from WS 97.5 to WS 115, with WS 125 agreed for Sullom Voe load. The 70,000mt Caribs up coast market held at WS 77.5 level, but with potential to firm.
The market for 75,000mt from the Middle East Gulf to Japan held at WS 107.5, with 55,000mt firming 12.5/15 points to close to WS 120 level. Another disappointing week in the 37,000mt Continent/USAC trade saw rates lose around 20 points to WS 115. A more active week in the 38,000mt trade from the US Gulf to the UK-Continent saw rates gain 25 points to WS 97.5.
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