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Similar to last week, the Capesize started positively but it was soon paused. The Capesize 5TC struggled in the negative territory in the rest of the week, breaking the $30,000 threshold and eventually settling at $28,875 on Friday. After the cyclone across Western Australia, C5, the West Australia to Qingdao trade continued its turbulent journey by reaching over $13 mid-week before ultimately closing at $12.171. C3, the Brazil to Qingdao trade hovered at the level of $30 but ultimately closed at $28.535. Atlantic round voyage and front haul runs both declined, but they are still about twice of the values compared with the second half of March last year, at $25,642 and $56,625 respectively.
It proved to be a compelling week for the Panamax sector, where the Atlantic appeared to provide a positional divide with the North Atlantic tonnage under pressure due to a lack of demand. With $20,000 agreed for an 83,000-dwt delivery NW Africa for a trip via NC South America redelivery Skaw-Gibraltar, rates now appeared sub $19,000 for the same criteria. Further south the seasonal steady flow of cargo from the Americas kept rates largely flat but appeared to be tapering off as the week ended as a wide bid/offer spread emerged with Charterers stepping back. Asia too saw steady declines as the week progressed with the north of the basin in particular coming under pressure, whilst further south some limited support lent by steady coal demand ex Indonesia along with grain supply emanating from South America. Plenty of period activity the headline rate being an 82,000-dwt delivery Vietnam achieving $24,000 basis 6/8 months.
A more positive affair for the sector overall with a strong amount of demand from the Atlantic outpacing the lower activity levels seen from the Asian arena, although there was seemingly a more robust feel from the Indian Ocean as the high levels seen in the South Atlantic saw vessels looking further afield. In the Atlantic, demand from the South Americas saw a 63,000-dwt fixing a trip from Soth America to Singapore-Japan in the very low $20,000s plus low $1 million ballast bonus. For trans-Atlantic runs a 63,000-dwt fixed again from South America to the Continent-Mediterranean at $27,000. From the US Gulf a 61,000-dwt was heard to have been fixed for a trip to Japan at $27,000. From the Indian Ocean, a 61,000-dwt fixed delivery Port Elizabeth redelivery Far East at $23,000 plus $230,000 ballast bonus. Whilst from Asia limited fresh enquiry from Indonesia saw a 60,000-dwt fixing delivery Hong Kong trip via Indonesia redelivery South Korea at $15,000.
The handy sector saw more visible activity in the Atlantic and levels seeing steady improvements. On the Continent, a 36,000-dwt was linked to fixing from Grenaa via Rostock to Morocco at $17,250 whilst a 32,000-dwt fixed from Hartlepool to the US Gulf at $13,300. The South Atlantic, continued to see a lack of available tonnage and a 32,000-dwt was rumored to have fixed from Recalada to the Persian Gulf in the $20,000s. Also, a 37,000-dwt fixed from Vitoria to Rotterdam at around $20,000 earlier in the week. More activity was also seen in the US Gulf and US East Coast with a 38,000-dwt fixing from Norfolk to the Continent at $11,000. The Pacific region had remained balanced in general with a 38,000-dwt opening in Qingdao fixing a trip to the Persian Gulf at $14,000, whilst a 37,000-dwt fixed from Bayuquan for an inter Far East trip in the $15,000s.

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