Rates for Panamax vessels shipping grains and coal rose for a sixth session, amid speculation that demand to haul both cargoes is increasing.
Chinese imports of coal to generate electricity for summer is increasing demand for shipping as its stockpiles drop, according to Commodore Research & Consultancy.
The Baltic Dry Index, a measure of commodity shipping prices, slid for a sixth session as a surplus of vessels drove down rates owners charge to haul cargoes from iron ore to grains.
The Baltic Dry Index, a measure of commodity-shipping costs, had its biggest weekly gain since August 2010 as strengthening demand to haul cargoes from iron ore to grains lifted freight rates.
Demand strengthened for Panamax ships hauling coal to Chinese power stations after stockpiles of the fuel declined, boosting charter rates for the vessels, according to Commodore Research & Consulting.
Coal imports by China almost doubled in April from a year earlier, according to the China Coal Transport and Distribution Association.
The cost of hauling iron ore is poised to rise to a three-year high after shipments to China expanded to a record, boosting returns for Nippon Yusen K.K. and other commodity carriers.