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.

For a straight trip from Baltic to the Rotterdam area, a low rate US$ 30,000 has been conceded by chart­erers. Algeria bought another 300,000mt grains for February loading based on about US$19.5/mt. Scrap charterers are testing owners of a 34,000 dwt at US$ 12,000 daily from Skaw via Baltic to the Black Sea.

From the Black Sea, grain charterers have booked 50,000mt to East Africa, averaging a rate of around US$ 15,000 daily. On the other hand, US$ 9-9,250 daily for a 30,000mt pig iron cargo to Brazil looks disappointing. From West Africa, ore charterers have covered a 52,000mt cargo to China at the equivalent of US$ 20,000 daily. Strikes in Argentina are causing long delays in the area. Cancelling tonnage running late makes no sense since earlier tonnage is not there anyway. Charterers have to cry with the wolves.

The USG is signalling an upward trend with 38,000 dwt covered at US$ 18,000 for a trip to the Conti­nent. An Ultramax was covered at US$ 26,000 for a long trip to Bangladesh, whilst another Ultramax got fixed at US$ 24,000 daily for a trip to the Continent.

The East has been very active with Ultramax tonnage fixed for a NoPac RV at just below US$ 11,000 daily. A 38,000 dwt vessel was booked to WCCA at US$ 5,000 daily. Australian charterers have been show­ing interest in a 38,000 dwt ship at US$ 9,000 daily for an Aussie round voyage. With a number of US$ 11,500 daily the owners’ numbers were looking far apart. A rate of US$ 9,750 daily is rumoured as done on a 37,000 dwt vessel for 3-5 months of trading with delivery Bangladesh. For a quick trip from PG to the Mediterranean, it seems possible to find ton­nage of 37-39,000 dwt at around US$ 4,500-4,750.

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