BMTI Handy Bulk Market Update (22 June 2021)

handysize vesselThe low number of fixtures reported is self-explanatory. The deadlocked situation is the market’s latest variant. The charterers currently feel less inclined than the owners to move. If the shipowners are invited to make a move, they often come up with ridiculous numbers for fear that a more reasonable number would be quickly outdated. Fertilizer brokers report about their clients’ traders complaining about the higher than calculated fixtures done by their shipping department. There is no marketplace where owners are facing losses, unheard of in the last decade. From the Red Sea, the owners of a 35,000 dwt were seeing US$ 25,000 for 4-6 months of trading, whilst talking US$ 34,000 daily.

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BMTI Bulker Market Update (15 June 2021)

handymax bulkerEven if daily gains have arguably eased from their gigantic US$ 5,000 improvements of days past, the Capesize freights remain very well positioned for the week ahead as charterers consent to all but the most absurdly increased premiums on long hauls. Front hauls are just below US$ 50,000 on modern tonnage with owners set to move that market before the week is through. Brazil/China voyage business is benefiting from the bulls, now at circa US$ 26.5/mt. Sentiment remains strongly on the side of Panamax owners, though some charterers are heard to be putting up more resistance now than they were a week ago. Nonetheless, rates are widely ascendant with scarcely a down-note to be heard on the spot market. TARV rates are still flying to new highs day-by-day with US$ 30,000 likely to be reached on Kamsarmax tonnage by midweek (considering rate trends). Pac rounds are also trading just below US$ 30,000 with some owners already professing to see that level.

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BMTI Dry Bulk Commodity Update (7 June 2021)

wheat field commoditiesProduction forecasts were raised by the European Commission for common wheat output in the 27-member bloc of EU countries for the 2021-22 season to 126.2 Mt (from last month’s forecast of 124.8 Mt) or 6.5% higher than the crop of 117.2 Mt registered in the prior season. Forecasts for EU exports of common wheat (soft wheat) were unchanged for the 2021-22 season at 30 Mt (versus 27 Mt exported in the previous season). Predictions for overall wheat stocks were downgraded to 10.8 Mt (from 11.4 Mt) due to increased expectations for use in animal feed.

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BMTI Handy Bulk Market Update (25 May 2021)

handysizeWith holidays in many countries it has been a quiet start to the week. Nevertheless, mesmerizing news and events keep emerging. There have been rumours of operators unwilling to perform last year booked cargoes for the obviously financial reasons. (They seem to lack the resources to cover the difference….) Looking at the Eastern market, head-spinning fixtures have come to light. A 36,000 dwt vessel was taken from CIS for 2-4 months of trading at US$ 32,500 daily with worldwide redelivery. A fertilizer-friendly 32,000 dwt ship was taken from China for an Australian round voyage at US$ 30,000 daily. Another 38,000 dwt ship found a taker at US$ 20,500 daily for 12 months of trading. Yet another remarkable fixture on 38,000 dwt ship has been rumoured done at US$ 25,000 daily for a trip from Japan via Indonesia to Japan. Owners of a 37,000 dwt were not surprised seeing US$ 32,000 daily for their vessel for a trip from Japan to Singapore area.

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BMTI Shipping Investment Review (11 May 2021)

shipping financeOslo-listed dry bulk operator 2020 Bulkers recently released their first quarter numbers, showing that the company has performed notably better than a year before with total revenue of US$ 17m for Q1-2021 (compared to US$ 7.8m in Q1-2020). Operating profit over the same quarter amounted to US$ 8.2m (versus US$ 2.5m a year before) while net profit was US$ 5.8m. The Bermuda-registered company currently operates a fleet of eight Newcastlemax bulk carriers. Average TCE earnings in Q1 of this year were US$ 23,900 daily, says 2020 Bulkers, while the average for Q2 so far has climbed to US$ 33,700 daily. This week, owners Tor Olav Trøim and Ubon Partners sold over 14% of company shares on the Oslo Stock Exchange for US$ 36m, leaving Trøim with just under 25% of company ownership.

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Bulker Market Update (03 May 2021)

ultramax bulk carrierThe Capesize roll is undeniable with long hauls and voyage rates alike moving from high to high as charterers prove more than willing to pay up for guaranteed tonnage. With front hauls in the mid US$ 60,000s now it has started to look like an entirely different market than owners had become used to in the last decade, but there remains plenty of healthy scepticism about the sustainability of this recovery. South American cargoes and buoyant sentiment are keeping Panamax rates aloft, if not flying, with solid upgrades on a daily basis taking TARVs to just under US$ 20,000 daily on 82,000 dwt tonnage. Eastern-based demand has been especially lively in recent days with new activity particular evident around Australia and SE Asia. Indo rounds are flying high with US$ 28,000s achieved on S.China delivery. A lack of steady enough demand in the Atlantic basin has given charterers an opportunity to push Supramax rates back down across most of the major routes—though some were quick to blame the upcoming UK and Asian holidays for the downturn. Black Sea front hauls have reversed back toward a flat US$ 30,000 daily on the 58,000 dwt assessment.

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BMTI Handy Bulk Market Update (20 Apr 2021)

handymax bulkerMany brokers are looking forward to a very likely mesmerizing new week. Expectations are running high, after the Atlantic market changed course towards the end of last week. The bullish Kamsarmax market is supporting the smaller Ultramax tonnage, which many charterers are trying to switch to, if possible. Grain charterers are in lose talks with Ultra owners, indicating their interest at US$ 27-28,000 for a front haul ex-Continent, for which last week Kamsarmax tonnage was covered at US$ 36,000. Handysize rates are recovering with fertilizer charterers rating a 36,000 dwt at US$ 14,500 daily for a trip to ECSA, which is up around US$2,000 daily on last-done. Charterers’ appetite in period tonnage remains unbroken.

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Firmness Prevails in Northern Short Sea Freights (8 Apr 2021)

short sea vesselThe Easter holidays have dinged cargo demand in the North Sea and Baltic Sea trades, although not as seriously as they might have in years past. All things considered, even with the slowing around the long holiday weekend, freights and sentiment have been rather steady with even some routes showing minor gains over last-done. On the whole, however, freight levels are cruising sideways at last-done with charterers content to meet owners at their recently-won highs with owners themselves having less success in getting anything higher now than they were getting in March.

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Bulker Owners Hopeful for Q2 (31 Mar)

ultramax bulk carrierThe last day of the first quarter of 2021 brings mixed tidings for the Capesizes with declines having continued to ease from recent sharpness and owners starting to feel better about Q2 prospects after enjoying a (mostly) fruitful Q1. Indeed, owners may have become spoiled, if just barely, after seeing rates keep rising for weeks on end. But still at recent historical highs, Cape freight rates will need to reach a bottom soon (as they are already suggesting) if they want to maintain these highs. Front hauls are already moving in a positive direction with US$ 32,500 at last-done.

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BMTI Handy Bulk Market Update (23 Mar 2021)

handysize vesselUltramax tonnage was taken for a NoPac round voyage at US$ 26,000 daily. Another one was concluded for 12 months of trading at around US$ 21,500 daily. It is highly unlikely that owners of a 23,000 dwt open in P.I. needed to be persuaded for doing a trip to WC India at just below US$ 20,000 daily, where they can expect rates of around US$ 35-40,000 daily for a trip back to China. From EC India, a couple of Ultramaxes got fixed at US$ 40,000 daily to China. The PG is another hot spot, with a 56,000 dwt taken from Oman via PG to EC India at the same fabulous US$ 40,000 daily. And the rate of US$ 18,000 daily done on an Ultra from Japan via NoPac to the ECSA must be considered as a good choice by the owners.

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BMTI Dry Bulk Commodity Update (16 Mar 2021)

scrap metal shippingSustained limitations in global availability continue to support potash prices around the world. One major producer was reportedly making plans to increase price offers in its European markets by as much as EUR 15/mt beginning in the second quarter. MOP prices have stabilized at around EUR 235-245/mt CIF with average prices trending toward the higher end of this range. Premiums for granular MOP over standard potash grades are said to be widening as well across the UKC-Med fertilizer markets. Potash prices are rising in concert globally with price support especially strong in the US, Brazil and Southeast Asia. Granular MOP from NW Europe (spot) has remained at an average of EUR 240/mt CIF in the second week of March while the price range for USG-based prices has moved from US$ 300-308/ mt FOB to US$ 315-325/mt FOB over the same week. Average US barge prices rose by US$ 13/mt in the first week of March to reach their highest level in five years. A similar spirit of buoyancy is expected to drive prices upward on European markets going into the second quarter of 2021, though the sustainability of the uptick remains hard to assess as demand is only running slightly ahead of supply at present.

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Next Revival in Bulker Rates Underway (9 Mar 2021)

handymax bulkerBulker freights have entered another phase of revival, much to the approval of the ownership class, with the BDI nearing a two-month high point and sentiment again at the backs of the tonnage side of the chartering equation. Capesize rates remain tilted toward the eastern hemisphere with major gains seen in front haul trips (ex-ECSA and USG) and, especially, inter-Pacific RVs, even if the same have levelled out in the high teens of just over US$ 19,000 daily. Trans-Atlantic RVs are getting into the swing of things as well, however, with TARVs poised to hit US$ 16,000 on 180,000 dwt ships by midweek.

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Short Sea: Baltic Freights in Bullish Mode (2 Mar 2021)

mediterraneanFundamentals continue to greatly favour owners of tonnage in the northern trades at the moment—indeed the European coaster market at large. Baltic and North Sea-based ships are fetching steadily rising offers and, note brokers, positions are extending to as much as two weeks ahead instead of the usual prompt business that the market has become accustomed to in recent years. A degree of conclusion on Brexit, brokers say, has given UK traders more confidence about forward positions. Charterers are finding it more challenging to get tonnage when they want it. Freights are rising across the board. Westward rates with fertilizers and grains from the Baltic States to ARAG have surged from high EUR 20s/mt into the low EUR 30/mt in little more than a week’s time to approach upwards of EUR 33-35/mt.

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BMTI Handy Bulk Market Update (24 Feb 2021)

handymax bulkerQuo vadis, market? To throttle the climbing speed to new heights in rate levels is badly needed! This said, grain traders are pointing to the upcoming season in ECSA, wherefore many trading houses keep hedging themselves by booking fairly regularly Kamsarmax tonnage in the East, at now beyond US$ 20,000 daily. Thus it cannot be ruled out that there will be no throttle, but the market certainly will reach a ceiling, which to predict does not appear possible right now. Grain traders seem to believe in a strong, for them unpalatable market. For April shipment they have seen number of around US$ 40/mt for 25000/10 wheat from Black Sea, or US$ 20-22,000 daily from owners, which they consider realistic.

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Cape rates buoyant after eastern holidays (16 Feb 2020)

capesize vesselBreathing a collective sigh of relief, Capesize owners see their freights begin the week on a widely positive note (as presaged near the end of last week) with notable gains on the trans-Pacific round voyage in particular. Pacific RV rates on time charter basis rose by some US$ 500 day-on-day over the first session of the week to near low US$ 7,000s on 180,000 dwt ships. Front haul rates are also looking to make a positive reversal with US$ 26,000s moving toward US$ 27,000s. TARVs are hovering at US$ 15,000.

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Handy Bulk Market Update (2 Feb 2021)

handymax bulkerThe chartering market has been quiet all over the place, which is also reflected in the number of fix­tures reported. Off the Continent, an LME was fixed for a Murmansk round voyage at US$ 19,000 daily with redelivery ARA. Grain charterers took a 33,000 dwt North Spain for a trip via Rouen to Algeria at US$ 16,000 daily, which equates to around US$ 25-26/mt. There are charterers hoping to find tonnage at US$ 22.0-22.5/mt later this month, and which at this very moment this seems to be more of a pious hope than reality. Rostock to Casablanca business has been secured for 30,000mt at the equivalent of US$ 15,000 daily basis Rotterdam. As far as Supra-Ultras are concerned brokers have been seeing a limi­ted number ships with any prospects of better rates.

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Capesize freights enter phase of reversal (25 Jan 2021)

handysize vesselWith the week concluding on a pair of consecutive losses, it would appear that a freight reversal for the Capesizes was more than a flash in the pan. And with losses looking sharper than in the last round of corrections, it would also seem that owners have more to be worried about. Nonetheless, the fact that rates are still trading at relatively high levels bodes well for near term success of the biggest bulkers.

Atlantic grain flows are keeping Panamax owners in demand, if only just enough to keep rates moving steadily in the upward direction. But steady progress is arguably better than explosive gains in the bulker game, so owners are happy to see their sector getting consistent inquiry for once. South America remains the main driver with rounds from the Far East via ECSA and back fetching DOP rates within the US$ 14-15,000 daily range with the lower US$ 14,000s more likely on the standard 76,000 dwt ships and higher US$ 14,000s on the 82,000 dwt moderns.

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BMTI Dry Bulk Commodity Update (19 Jan 2021)

wheat field commoditiesExport prices for Russian wheat keep rising ahead of the wheat export tax expected to coming into force on 15 February (and stay in place until end-June). Wheat of 12.5% protein content loading from Black Sea ports for late-January loading is currently trading at around US$ 275/mt FOB, according to con­sultancies IKAR and Refinitiv, some US$ 13-18/mt higher than late December 2020. As long as demand stays robust, analysts expect to see prices remain buoyant until at least the end of the month.

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Dry bulk year off to bullish start (12 Jan 2021)

bulk carrier shipWith mineral cargo congestion in the Pacific and a sudden lack of open tonnage across much of the Capesize market, spot freight levels for the biggest bulkers have been rising by leaps and bounds to the extent that market observers can scarcely take an accurate reading for having to throw it out one hour later. All long haul rates are on fire, but the front haul is leading the pack with another US$ 4-5,000 jump on Tuesday to take the assessment into range of US$ 45,000 daily on 180,000 dwt tonnage. Pacific RV time charters, meanwhile, are hitting mid-high US$ 20,000s with US$ 27-28,000 (or more) very likely by week’s end, if not even US$ 30,000 daily (given current trends). Shipowners are doing their best to lock in the best rates they can get as it seems unlikely for the boom times to be sustained into late January.

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Handy Bulk Market Update (5 Jan 2021)

Reviewing the first day of the new year, one cannot but observe that the December momentum has been seamlessly transmitted into the new year. As repeat­edly mentioned earlier, the lively interest in period tonnage remains a case in point. Capesizes have been taken for 24 months in the low US$ 15,000s daily and around US$ 14,500 daily for 12 months of trad­ing. LME tonnage has been traded in the low US$ 10,000s for 12 months with delivery in the East. Ultramax tonnage has been rated by charterers for 6-9 months of trading at around US$ 11,500 with worldwide redel. Charterers seem to have more faith in the future and are ready for longer term commit­ments and higher freights. Kamsarmax owners have achieved around US$ 23,000 daily for a Baltic RV.

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Bulker Freight Market Overview (18 December 2020)

Ultramax at sunsetThe market for the Capes is a bit subdued with just a few trans-Atlantic coal cargoes coming out of Colombia at slightly increasing spot freight rate levels but hardly any iron ore is leaving Western Australia. The fronthauls are rumoured to be rated in the high US$ 26,000s daily at the moment.

Spot freight rates for the Panamaxes keep on dropping on most major routes but new business is seen in both basins. A ten year old 82,000 dwt has been talked for a trip to the Far East at around US$ 14,500 daily plus US$ 450,000 BB with loading in ECSA at the beginning of January but in general activity in this area is limited. A round trip via Baltic into the Continent saw a freight rate of some US$ 20,500 per day on an older 78,000 dwt with delivery in the ARA region.

The Supras and the Handysizes are slowing down somewhat and especially in the Far East they seem to take a little break. Vintage tonnage of 50,000 dwt has been rumoured at about US$ 8,600 daily for a CIS Pacific trip to Korea with delivery in North China, for which a younger 58,000 dwt could fetch some US$ 750 more per day.

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Short Sea: Northern Markets quite busy (16 December 2020)

mediterraneanThe firm market holds on during the last days before Christmas holidays will start in Europe as it was expected before. Owners can still pick out the cherries as demand remains strong and spot supply is very tight. A broker active in the region told BMTI that there are “almost no vessels available at the Baltic” – a commentary putting a smile on owners face. It is a hard work for charterers to cover stems up to the end of December as spot freight rates keep heading north. Especially there is some urgency for shipments into the UK. The Brexit discussions going on with the EU made the pound drop last week some 2.2% which is the currency’s worst performance during the last three months. And the uncertainties about the conditions to be observed from January on surely did not make shipping market participants happy. A clay shipment of 7,000mt into the Spanish Med has been concluded at a spot freight rate of around EUR 16.50/mt loading in Southern England while some EUR 14.50/mt has been talked for general cargo stems of 4-5,000mt into the lower Baltic with same delivery area. From the East Coast of Denmark scrap parcels of 4,000mt can be concluded at freight rates hovering around EUR 30/mt when destination is Casablanca. From the ARAG region cargoes are rumoured at some EUR 18-19/mt for 7-8,000mt heading into Portugal. With the holiday disruption and the pre-Brexit nail-biting coming to an end the short-term sentiment points to a slowing momentum in the market lying ahead.

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BMTI Dry Bulk Commodity Update (11 December 2020)

coalDuring the first ten months of the year around 3.5Mt of hot rolled coil (HRC) has been imported to Turkey according to official data which is nearly the same amount imported YoY. The biggest supplier was Russia with about 960,000mt, followed by the Ukraine with 560,000mt, France with 390,000mt and Romania with 190,000mt.

About 4.6Mt of rebar has been exported from Turkey during the period January-October 2020 which is a decrease of some 8% year-on-year. The largest buyers have been Israel with about 740,000mt, followed by Yemen with 730,000mt and the US with 380,000mt.

According to data published by the French Steel Federation (FFA) the country’s average crude steel production per month has dropped to around 930,000mt in the period January-October this year. This is a drop of around 25% compared to last year’s monthly average of about 1.24Mt and more than 27% compared to the numbers of 2018.

Crude steel production in the EU fell in October for the tenth month in a row according to information from the World Steel Association by 5.6% to 12.61Mt year-on-year. While Italy’s output dropped by 4.6% to 2.1Mt during this month and Spain’s production decreased by 7.7% to 1.1Mt, Germany’s output grew by more than 3% to 3.4Mt in October compared to the same month a year ago.

The Russian Ministry of Energy published new revised data for the country’s coal production and export for the current year. The production is expected to drop by around 41.4Mt or 9.3% year-on-year to some 400Mt which is a downward correction of nearly 2% from former estimates reported this year. Export is forecasted to slide by 4% YoY in 2020 to around 211Mt.

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Bulker Freight Market Overview (09 December 2020)

PanamaxSpot freight rates for the Capesizes remain depressed and the amount of fresh shipments is rather limited. The trans-Atlantic rounds hardly achieve rates in the mid to high US$ 11,000s daily at the moment and the Pacific rounds fell by some US$ 2,500 in one day. Fronthauls are rumoured in the low to mid US$ 25,000s per day and the iron ore highway trades are dropping further also.

The market for the Panamaxes is rather boring in regard to the low amount of fresh business available in both basins but the spot freight rates seem to have reached a turnaround finally with increases of US$ 200-300 seen on many major routes. Indonesian coal rounds are talked in the low US$ 13,000s daily with delivery in Southern China for modern tonnage. An interesting amount of periods have been concluded like a 9-12 months period for a younger 82,000 dwt at a freight rate of around US$ 12,500 daily with delivery in China and redelivery in the Far East.

The Supras and the Handysizes experience a rather stable market with interesting business around although sentiment seems to weaken somewhat in both basins. Charterers have been trying their luck to attract an older 55,000 dwt for a trip from Indonesia to WC India at a freight rate of US$ 8,000 daily and delivery in Northern China but the business failed. Handysizes can fetch freight rates of around US$ 7,000 per day for a trip to the Continent with loading in WCSA. Modern tonnage can be rated for a grains voyage from USEC to West Africa at about US$ 40-41/mt.

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Handy Bulk Update (04 December 2020)

Pacific Basin HandysizeMay be at long last that market conditions for the first quarter of the new year will hardly differ from the last days of the old year. These are the prospects expressed by several market players. In any case sentiment is up bolstering optimistic views. Few newbuildings are unlikely to spoil the broth. And as a result the interest in period tonnage is remarkable, although long term deals are still a rarity. This may have to do with the dreadful past and charterers rather shun from long commitments.

Off the Continent Ultra owners declined US$ 13,500 daily for 3-5 months trading and invited charterers to consider US$ 15,500 daily. The charterers didn’t. They failed on a 58,000 dwt at US$ 13,500 daily instead. A Baltic round has been concluded at US$ 22,000 daily on an Ultra. Handies are still doing well with rates agreed for 38-40,000dwt tonnage in the region of US$ 18,500 daily for a trip to the East Med. Also grain charterers need to have deep pockets to cover Rouen to Algeria cargoes.

From the US Gulf petcoke charterers took a 58,000dwt at US$ 23,000 daily to China and 38,000dwt was fixed to Continent/Med at US$ 19,000 daily. On voyage basis petcoke charterers were seeing US$ 38/mt for or 55 000mt to China. ECSA is vivid for Handies. After last week a 32,000dwt was fixed from ECSA to the US Gulf at US$ 12,000 daily, now a 34,000dwt got US$ 13,500 daily for a similar trip. A 58,000dwt in ballast from West Africa was fixed from Brazil to the Continent at US$ 17,000 daily. Very promising indeed.

South African charterers failed at US$ 8,000 daily on a 39,000dwt from East Africa to the Med, whilst others managed to fix a 28,000dwt from Durban to the East Med at US$ 7,500 daily.

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Short Sea continue on positive track (02 December 2020)

wheat fieldIt is the third month in a row now with the northern markets gaining momentum and tonnage for loading on spot has become really short in the region. Charterers have few options to cover their stems quickly than offering more money at the few vessels still looking for work although not all trade routes are profiting in the same way. In the North Sea Brexit is hanging as a dark cloud over the shipping industry and UK trade is therefore under pressure. The Baltic is also a lively and strong market with charterers facing problems to find ships for early December loading. From Poland a wheat (45’) cargo of 12,200mt has been concluded last week to Portugal at a spot freight rate of around EUR 13.50/mt and same commodity and loading area heading to Northern Spain has been traded few days later at a freight rate of around EUR 18.75/mt for an 8,000mt parcel. General cargo of 4-5,000mt are rumoured in the range of EUR 32-33/mt loading in the upper Baltic and destination in mid western UK. From Southeast UK a barley shipment of 5,500mt saw a freight rate of about EUR 25.50/mt with redelivery in Sardegna. It seems as if for the rest of the year the situation will offer much of the same for the short sea market in the area at least until the beginning of the Christmas holidays.

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Bulker Freight Market Overview (27 November 2020)

Stormy watersSome fresh business for the Capesizes shows up and iron ore voyages out of West Australia are rated again above US$ 7/mt while Brazilian loading can currently be concluded in the mid US$ 13s/mt. Coal cargoes of some 160,000mt from Colombia are talked in the high US$ 7s/mt and further firming when heading to ARA. The trans-Atlantic as well as the Pacific rounds have seen gains of around US$ 400-500 in one day with probably some more improvement possible.

A flurry of fresh shipments brightens the future prospect for the Panamaxes at the moment with spot freight increasing slowly but at a steady pace. Indonesian coal is shipped to China and India and grain is pouring out of ECSA. A younger 82,000 dwt has been talked at about US$ 12,000 daily for a coal trip from West Australia redelivery Japan. And same commodity is rumoured at about US$ 11.50/mt for 75,000mt for mid December loading USEC and destination ARAG. Tonnage in the North Atlantic is a bit tight putting some pressure on freights.

An interesting stream of shipments makes the market for the smaller sizes rather lively. From the US Gulf a 5-year old 63,000 dwt saw an APS freight rate of around US$ 18,000 daily for a trip towards ARA and a Supra is rumoured to have been done at some US$ 24,000 per day for an inter-Continent trip. Small Handysizes are talked in the range of US$ 14,000 daily for shipments out of ECSA heading to the Continent. In the Far East the situation remains encouraging and owners are pushing freight rates higher with the Pacific rounds talked in the mid US$ 9,000s daily with delivery in North China.

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Handy Bulk Update (25 November 2020)

handymax bulkerThe chartering market is looking still very promising. Even in the East demand for tonnage is intensifying. Off the Continent Ultra tonnage was bid US$ 24,000 daily for a trip via Baltic to Singapore-Japan range, which the owners turned down being the wrong direction. Handy tonnage of 35,000dwt was talked at US$ 18,500 daily for a trip to West Africa. From the Mediterranean a 30,000dwt was rumoured done from East Med to South Span in the low US$ 9,000 daily. Grain charterers were seeing US$ 21/mt for 25,000mt to Tunisia. Coal charterers quoting 45,000mt to South France at US$ 10/mt, based on a very slow discharge rate. Rates are moving upwards from West Africa where Supra tonnage is fixable at around US$ 21,000 daily for a trip to the East, whilst rates keep inching forward.

ECSA is also generating nice numbers for the owners, with Ultra tonnage rated by charterers at US$15,000 daily for a trip to Continent/Med versus owners’ rate of US$ 18-19,000 daily. Handies are doing very well, with a 37,000dwt fixed at US$ 17,000 daily for 3 months trading with delivery in South Brazil. Another 37,000dwt was bid US$ 13,000 daily for a trip from Plate to North Brazil. To cover a trip from Plate to Yemen can cost charterers dearly – roughly US$ 12,500-13,500 daily on a 31,000dwt ex West Africa.

Good news for the owners is also reported from the US Gulf where 34,000dwt was bid US$ 15,500 daily for a trip from EC Mexico via Mississippi River back to East Coast Mexico. A couple of orders have been quoted from South Africa without yet seeing numbers exchanged. But from Red Sea fertilizer charterers were aghast at the US$ 11,000 daily they were seeing on tonnage of 35,000dwt with dely WC India.

The East is getting short of early Handysize vessels. The owner of a 35,000dwt – after rejecting US$ 7,000 daily for a trip from EC India to China, which he thought should be worth US$ 8,500 daily, found a taker after all at this level for an Australian r/v .Ultra owners were seeing US$ 11,500 daily from CJK to India

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Bulker Freight Market Overview (19 Nov 2020)

capesize vesselPacific Capesizes seem to be splitting away from their Atlantic counterparts as eastern-based freights are looking altogether more positive while the west­ern rates remain in free-fall. West Australian voyages to China are turning around, moving from the US$ 6.5/mt area toward US$ 6.7/mt at midweek and suggesting further improvements based on current sentiment. Likewise, trans-Pacific RVs are some US$ 600 higher than the previous session to close in the middle US$ 13,000s area. Improving interest in late month dates in the East is prompting a minor up­ward correction in Pacific rates (even if it is not an all-out recovery). Front haul time charters, mean­while, continue to plummet, losing some US$ 1,500 to slide to US$ 24,000 on the assessment (likely to suffer further losses before the week is through).

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Short Sea Rates Enjoy Upward Correction (03 Nov 2020)

short sea shipA virtuous cycle of increased cargo ordering spurred by tightening avails, thus spurring more ordering (and so on), has taken over in the northern trades, brokers agree, with rates seeing more upward movement in recent weeks than they have all year, letting October take its traditional role as one of the most—if not the most—bullish months of the year. Freights are moving so quickly to new highs that they are likely to return to year-ago levels by the beginning of November, which would be an impressive recovery to close out an altogether disappointing year. The year is, of course, hardly over, but owners hold hope that it will maintain its positive trajectory for at least the duration of November as freights return to their “true” market level and upward corrections continue apace. Rates ex-ARAG to WCUK (3,000mt general cargoes) have continued to fluctuate over October in the low teens of EUR 11-12/mt with rates already rumoured to have reached EUR 13-14/mt for early November positions. Eastbound traffic from ECUK to the Baltic States is hitting the mid-high teens of EUR 15-16/mt, brokers say, while the reverse from the Baltic States to ARAG has long since surpassed EUR 20/mt to start trading in the low EUR 20s/mt.

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