Bulk report – Week 44
The Capesize market has endured another difficult period of sliding rates as the 5TC sustained losses week-on-week of -8866 to close out at $27,199. On the brighter side, after a month of descent, the Capesize market sentiment closed on a positive note for the week as a firmer footing appeared to form around several routes. Sustainable or not, it will be welcomed by some as a breather. While physical markets weren’t overly busy this week, especially with a public holiday muting Thursday, the same cannot be said of the paper markets as solid fixture volumes were recorded as traders managed positions. The earning spread between basins closed slightly this week as the Transpacific C10 now at $23,987 compares to the Transatlantic at 32,610. However, the Atlantic sentiment has had a not insignificant bump up to close the week. The West Australia to China C5 dipped overall throughout the week yet closed up +0.309 for the weekend at $10.85. The Brazil to China C3 continued its slide throughout the week closing at $24.66. With a little more of Q4 remaining, there is time for more fireworks - although time is running out.
Some described the Panamax market as a bloodbath this week with all values seeing massive corrections. The Aussie/Nopac round trips were now traded at levels not seen since Q2 2021 as demand and confidence waned in the basin. Older and less desirable units by end week were now being forced to fix sub $20,000 for the shorter trips. An 81,000-dwt delivery Japan agreed a rate of $22,000 for a trip via NoPac redelivery Far East, which again underlined the tone here. The Atlantic, for most part, was seen to be less dramatic in its falls. However, the fall out in the Pacific doubled down on sentiment here too. Despite healthy demand, the Black sea failed to escape the correction with pressure building as ballasters underpinned the market. With a lot of fixing and failing it was difficult to assess accurately where true values stood, but fronthaul fixtures were now regularly agreed at way below $40,000.
The rot continued during the week as sentiment across both basins, particularly from Asia, remained low. BSI fell over 774 points week-on-week. Little surfaced on the period front, but a 63,000-dwt open Far East was heard fixed for five to seven months at $22,000. In the Atlantic, rates weakened. From the North Atlantic a 57,000-dwt open US east coast was fixed for a transatlantic run in the mid $30,000s. Whilst further south, from North Coast South America, an Ultramax fixed a trip to the Continent at around $38,000. From Asia, as coal imports to China slowed tonnage, lists grew across the area. A 61,000-dwt open Philippines fixing a trip via Indonesia redelivery China at $19,000. Further North a 61,000-dwt open North China fixing a Pacific round in the low $20,000s. It remains to be seen if the week ahead will see any change in direction.
This week has seen the BHSI make significant drops, largely due to falling numbers in the Asia markets, where a lack of fresh enquiry has seen the number of spot vessels build. A 28,000-dwt open in North Vietnam fixed a trip via Australia to Chennai-Lumut range at $25,750 and a 38,000-dwt was rumoured to have fixed a trip from China to the US Gulf at $29,000 earlier in the week. The Atlantic market also saw negative movements with the Black Sea and Mediterranean regions coming under pressure with a 32,000-dwt fixing from Canakkale via the Black Sea to Tunisia at $30,000 and a 34,000-dwt fixing from Annaba to East Coast South America with fertiliser at $33,000. Brazil has seen more activity with a 38,000-dwt fixing from Maceio to Portugal with an intended cargo of sugar at $37,000 and a 39,000-dwt fixing from Fortaleza via North Brazil to the US East Coast at $37,500.