$944 A Day Is A New Low In Transatlantic Roundtrip Rate

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A recent Splash 247 news article by Sam Chambers says that Transatlantic capesize round voyage rates hit new low of just $944 a day.

 Capesize woes have entered new depths

The transatlantic C8 route yesterday plummeted into triple-digit territory, coming in at $944 per day, according to the Baltic Exchange, capping off one of the most miserable Augusts on record.

Elsewhere, losses were recorded across the board; the C14 China-Brazil round voyage earnings were at $2,640 a day and on the C10 transpacific round voyage levels were at $4,842 a day. The 5TC was reported at $2,505 a day, around $10,000 shy of covering opex.

Translatlantic roundtrip rate

While cape backhaul routes have been trading negative for months at a time on a timecharter equivalent (TCE) basis, yesterday’s $944 translatlantic roundtrip rate set a new low, beating a March 2016 record of $1,015 per day on the same route.

“It’s a reasonable bet that capesize spot rates should bottom around here,” commented Dr Roar Adland, a professor at the Norwegian School of Economics.

The big unknown, according to Adland, potentially changing the market structure compared to past dry bulk freight market depressions, is the existence of scrubber-fitted vessels.

“Since the Baltic index ship is non-scrubber, scrubber-fitted ships can in theory offer freight rates that push the dollar per day index below zero even for the roundtrips. This would not have been possible in the past,” Adland explained.

Upward direction in capesize bulk carrier freight rates is two-fold

“Right now, the challenge in staking out an upward direction in capesize bulk carrier freight rates is two-fold,” argued analysts at Lorenzten & Co in a recent report. Any uptick is riding on an economic recovery in China pushing up requirements for steel and requirements for imports of iron ore, and, secondly, the ability by miners in West Australia and Brazil to come to market with enough cargo.

The unwinding of port congestion has been the other more subtle reason for the fading fortunes of the big bulk carriers.

“With four months left till the end of the year, a lot must go right in order for Capesize rates to recover back to profitable levels,” a recent report from Breakwave Advisors conceded.

The cape slump is also being felt in smaller vessel types with kamsarmaxes now approaching opex levels, with the 5TC being at $10,956 a day.

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Source: SPLASH

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