Capesize index slides to record low as China activity stalls

Feb 5 (Reuters) - The Baltic Exchange’s main sea freight index dropped on Wednesday, with the capesize segment slumping to an all-time low due to reduced demand for ships and muted activity in China amid a coronavirus outbreak.

* The Baltic index, which tracks rates for capesize, panamax and supramax vessels to ferry dry bulk commodities, dropped 23 points, or 5.0%, to 430.

* The capesize index declined 50 points to a negative 183, down for the 39th straight session

* Average daily earnings for capesizes, which typically transport 170,000-180,000 tonne cargoes including iron ore and coal, slid $481 to $3,015.

* Factories in China remained shut after the Lunar New Year holiday due to the coronavirus outbreak, which has led to the deaths of nearly 500 people in China and infected over 24,000.

* The panamax index dropped six points, or 1.1%, to 520.

* Average daily earnings for panamaxes, which usually carry coal or grain cargoes of about 60,000 tonnes to 70,000 tonnes, fell $57 to $4,681.

* The supramax index dropped six points to 512. (Reporting by Anjishnu Mondal in Bengaluru; Editing by Shailesh Kuber)