Rate Hike Slows in Smaller Bulkers (07 Mar 2023)

bulk carrierThe Capesizes do not appear to be running out of steam any time soon with the week kicking off with strong improvements nearly across the board as trans-Atlantic RVs near the US$ 11,000s and front hauls trips seem bound to reach US$ 25,000 daily by mid-week. Pacific-based round voyage business is also quite bullish at the moment with owners securing upwards of US$ 13,000 daily on standard RV basis (despite charterers’ efforts to lock in US$ 11-12,000) or about double the rates of two weeks ago.

Charterers say there has been a bit of relaxing in the strident position of Panamax owners in the Atlantic with last-done levels more likely to be secured than they were a few days ago. Front haul trips do appear to have stabilized in the low US$ 20,000s of around US$ 22-23,000 daily for the moment (basis 82,000 dwt tonnage), even as owners try to hit the mid US$ 20,000s for end-month dates. Whether charterers will end up winning out in this stand-off remains to be seen with market forces now in a tight balance.

Prospects have become suddenly more ambiguous for the Pacific Supramaxes with corrections seen on the NoPac RVs to the tune of US$ 500 day-on-day, taking levels back into the US$ 12,000s as charterers start to apply more pressure on rates where possible. Handies are steadier in the Atlantic. A 32,000 dwt is said to have fixed US$ 12-13,000 daily on DOP ex-W.Med via Continent to ECSA. A rate of US$ 9,000 DOP was secured on a 34,000 dwt vessel from the West Mediterranean via Black Sea to the US Gulf.

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