Dry Cargo

No ceiling in sight as capes crack the $40,000 mark

Capes cracked the $40,000 mark for the second time in three months yesterday with a favourable forward outlook suggesting the ceiling is still some way off.

Brazilian mining company Vale continues to be actively involved in the market, fixing several vessels for the C3 route between Tubarao to Qingdao, and the C14 China-Brazil round voyage moved up as a result to $39,686 a day on Monday, while the Baltic Exchange set the 5TC higher at $40,237 per day, up by $711 a day.

September FFA rates also leapt yesterday, jumping by $1,150 to hit the $45,000 level.

According to data from Cleaves Securities, the dry bulk fleet as a whole is currently registering a fleet utilisation rate of around 93%.

“As spot rates are an exponential function of fleet utilisation, small increases from the currently lofty levels could propel spot rates significantly higher,” Joakim Hannisdahl, head of research at Cleaves Securities, told Splash today.

Hannisdahl said that if Brazilian exports remain above 30m tonnes in the coming months, capes could reach $60,000 per day in the near term. Cleaves’ forecast from July is for capes to average $37,000 a day in the second half of this year.

“Dry bulk rates should remain firm as demand growth is expected across all dry bulk commodities, with Capesize rates likely to outperform during 2H21,” a new report from investment bank Jefferies predicted yesterday.

Sam Chambers

Starting out with the Informa Group in 2000 in Hong Kong, Sam Chambers became editor of Maritime Asia magazine as well as East Asia Editor for the world’s oldest newspaper, Lloyd’s List. In 2005 he pursued a freelance career and wrote for a variety of titles including taking on the role of Asia Editor at Seatrade magazine and China correspondent for Supply Chain Asia. His work has also appeared in The Economist, The New York Times, The Sunday Times and The International Herald Tribune.
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