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AMIS Market Monitor

last release: November 2018

Ocean freights

After dipping in the previous month, average Baltic Dry Index (BDI) quotations edged higher in October, climbing by 7 percent m/m on moderate advances across all underlying sectors. With y/y losses in the Capesize market outweighed by increases in the grains and oilseeds carrying segments, the Index was 5 percent higher than a year ago. 

Panamax rates were up by 11 percent on average compared to September. Persistent demand for coal and minerals dispatched from Australia and Indonesia, notably to India, coupled with busy trading in South America, provided support in the earlier part of October. Earnings at the US Gulf were also supported by good demand for grains/oilseeds and coal, with unusually large shipments of soybeans to Iran a notable feature.

Supramax and Handysize earnings also averaged higher, with major underpinning stemming from sustained grains shipments out of the Black Sea area, despite reports of stricter export inspections at Russian Federation ports. Good cargo volumes in the Atlantic and minerals demand in Australia also featured, although markets in Europe were little changed, as thin enquiry levels contrasted with limited tonnage supply. Amid attractive prices, and also reflecting changes to the pattern of world soybean flows – tied to reduced trade between the US and China – some unusual deliveries were reported; this included Handysize trips from the Mississippi River to Argentina’s River Plate.