Another difficult week for owners saw rates fail to gain any traction. There was talk midweek of 280,000mt fixed west at WS17.5, but thereafter the market Middle East Gulf to US Gulf via the Cape/Cape routing softened and is now assessed at a shade above WS15. In the 270,000mt to China trade, the week started with rates around WS28.5, but have now eased around three points. In addition, a run to Taiwan went at WS23 and Korean charterers fixed 274,000mt cargo at WS20.75 although this was on ex-drydock tonnage. In the Atlantic, rates for 260,000mt West Africa to China dipped below WS30, with WS 28.5 the low, and a replacement cargo was fixed at WS30, one point higher than the ship being replaced. In the US Gulf, rates for 270,000mt to China were steady in the $4.6m region.
Rates for 135,000mt Black Sea/Med have generally been hovering between WS45/47.5 level while levels for 130,000mt from Nigeria to UK-Continent have been flat at between the WS30 and WS32.5 mark. In the Middle East market rates for 140,000mt Basrah/Med nudged up with Turkish charterers agreeing WS20. However, this subsequently failed with own tonnage reprogrammed and the market is now assessed at just above WS18, and seemingly still under downward pressure. .
The start of the week saw a number of prompt liftings from Libya, with a high of WS97.5. Other vessels were also taken in mid/high WS80s. However, the excitement was short lived with last seen from Libya being concluded at WS72.5. For Ceyhan loading, rates moved up around six points to WS67.5 with Black Sea loadings at similar numbers. In Northern Europe rates remained flat with 80,000mt Cross-North Sea in the WS72.5-75 region, although WS82.5 was paid by Chevron, albeit for loading from the expensive port of Sullom Voe. In the 100,000mt Baltic/UKC trade the market was steady at between WS42.5/43. Across the Atlantic, there was little change with rates for 70,000mt Carib/US Gulf pegged at WS45, while 70,000mt US Gulf/UK-Continent eased 2.5 points to WS40..
It has been another unproductive week for owners. In the 75,000mt Middle East Gulf/Japan trade, rates have stagnated in the very high WS50s. In the LR1 trade the market eased around four points with Chevron able to cover a 55,000mt naphtha cargo at WS57.5. In the 37,000mt UK-Continent/USAC trade, it was a tale of two halves. In the early part of the week rates climbed to the WS85/90 region before falling back to the low WS70s with a West Africa run fixed at only WS82.5. There is a sense of déjà vu in the backhaul trade for 38,000mt from US Gulf to UK-Continent with rates flat at low/mid WS50s and Brazil discharge down 2.5 points on the week at WS72.5. The start of the week saw rates in the cross-Med trade nudge up to WS80 before easing back modestly to around the WS77.25 level..
Source: The Baltic Briefing