Thursday, 10 May 12 DRY BULK ERRATIC ON LACK OF DIRECTION - NIKOS ROUSSANOGLOU, HELLENIC SHIPPING
The dry bulk market has kept up its erratic behavior as it went down again during yesterday’s session, on a lack of direct guidance in terms of sentiment. The industry’s benchmark, the Baltic Dry Index (BDI), was down by nine points yesterday to 1,156 points, with most ship types retreating. The most losses were recorded from the Panamax market, which was down by 51 points to 1,390. At the same time, the Capesize and the Supramax markets were marginally down by 3 and 4 points respectively. The Baltic Capesize Index reached 1,628 points, while the Supramax Index ended yesterday’s session to 1,115 points. By contrast, the Handysize market was the only one which managed to keep up its pace, up by two points to 606 points.
In its latest weekly report, shipbroker Fearnleys said, referring on the Capesize market that “although still at levels covering little more than operating expenses, spot earnings improved by some 35% w-o-w. All or most of it is attributable to a healthier supply/demand balance for early positions in Atl - T/A business in particular. Atl rounds are up 100% to some USD 8200 on the back of tight prompt tonnage supply, whilst fronthaul levels are up only some 15% as a steady flow of ballasters from F.East keeps feeding this trade with more than sufficient tonnage. Nominal levels for the WAust/China conference trade are unchanged at an uninspiring USD 7.50 pmt, and only reduced bunker prices bring values for Pac rounds up 20% to USD 6750 - still a loss-making level for most ships. As usual when spot improves with support of paper, period activity has been substantial - exemplified by 170kdwt/blt 2001 S.Korea spot done for 4-6 months at USD 11750, 170kdwt/blt 1999 N.China mid May for 11-13 months at USD 11700, and 151kdwt/blt 1995 China prompt for 11-13 months at USD 10k said Fearnleys.
On the Panamax front, the shipbroker stated that there was a “lack of fresh grain cargoes from ECSA is taking the market down in a rather steep decent for Atlantic fronthaul candidates and ballasters from the Pacific. 17 + 700 APS achievable mid-week. Transatlantic rounds are also coming off the mid teen level for the same reasons; lack of fresh requirements. In the Pacific some more Indonesian coal is not enough to prevent a sliding tendency as NOPAC and Aussie buiz is slower. Rounds are now under 10,000. Activity level is decreasing and sentiment losing confidence short term in both hemispheres, well supported by a falling forward curve» stated the shipbroker.
As far as the Handy markets were concerned, the report mentioned that Atlantic market kept fairly stable, with fresh requirements fetching the spot tonnage. Skaw-Passero positions fixed around USD 5k for T/A shipments, while US Gulf fixtures were hovering around USD 20k for Cont direction. Fronthauls fixed same levels as last week, with fixtures reported at USD 17-18k levels. Pacific market has been weak and falling. For Indo-India, large eco Supra can fetch close to USD 11k bss N.China . Nickel ore cargoes are not seen in market anymore due to on-going Indo ban which has again taken away cargoes and putting pressure on market. Nopac also fixed around USD 10k dop Japan. Indian iron ore market remains quiet with less activity on WCI & ECI. WCI-China rates around USD 10k and ECI-China around USD 7k. Some ECI Supras have been ballasting to pick up Indo cargoes as well. RBCT rv fixed at APS USD 11k + BB USD 350k. Red Sea fertilisers to India are fixed high teens. Not much activity seen on short period and rates around USD 11k for large Supra said Fearnleys.
Regarding the newbuilding market, Fearnleys noted that it was a slow newbuilding market with only 5 contracts to report over the last week, all being Dry Bulk vessels. The South Korean Dongbu Group is behind the order of 4 Handysize Dry bulk vessels contracted at STX Dalian. Niovis Shipping of Greece has returned to Japan´s Mitsui ordering one 66,000 dwt Dry Bulk vessel. This is a new designed wide-beam and low draught version being able to compete with Panamaxes in draught-restricted ports. Hence, the slow order intake this week, yards are reporting continued interest and enquiries for MR and LR2 tankers and we expect to see more orders in these segments in the coming weeks. Source: Nikos Roussanoglou, Hellenic Shipping
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