The Baltic Exchange’s main sea freight index was little changed on Tuesday, as capesize and supramax gains offset lower rates in the panamax segment.

* The overall index, which factors in rates for capesize, panamax and supramax shipping vessels, rose 1 point, or 0.08%, to 1,271 points, snapping a three-day losing streak.

* The capesize index rose 50 points, or 6.7%, also snapping a three-day long streak of declines, to 797 points. The index registered its best daily percentage gain in two weeks.

* Average daily earnings for capesizes, which typically transport 150,000-tonne cargoes such as iron ore and coal, were up $409 at $6,608.

* China’s iron ore and steel prices rose as the government’s latest lending rate cut boosted sentiment, while demand prospect looked set to improve ahead of the peak season for construction steel.

* The panamax index, which has not seen a single day of gains since a month, lost 73 points, or 4.4%, to 1,572 points, on its worst day in a month.

* Average daily earnings for panamaxes, which usually carry coal or grain cargoes of about 60,000 to 70,000 tonnes, decreased $659 to $14,149.

* Nearly two-thirds of European territory is in a state of drought alert or warning due to heatwaves and low rainfall, reducing inland shipping, electricity production and the yields of certain crops, an EU agency said.

* The supramax index rose for the eighth consecutive session, gaining 14 points to 1,765 points.

Source: Hellenic Shipping News