Jan 14 (Reuters) - The Baltic Exchange’s main sea freight index slipped to a near nine-month trough on Tuesday, as a decline in rates for capesize and supramax vessels outweighed gains in the panamax segment.
* The Baltic index, which tracks rates for capesize, panamax and supramax vessels ferrying dry bulk commodities, eased 2 points, or 0.3%, to 763 points, its lowest since mid-April 2019.
* The capesize index shed 34 points, or 3.4%, to 970 points - its lowest level in over eight months.
* Average daily earnings for capesizes, which typically transport 170,000-180,000 tonne cargoes including iron ore and coal, dipped $67 to $9,255.
* China’s appetite for high-grade iron ore this winter could drop from the peaks hit in recent years as steel mills try to cut costs and prop up profit margins weighed down by the nation’s slowing economy, industry sources said.
* Meanwhile, China’s iron ore futures rebounded from a three-session slump on worries over possible disruption in shipments of the steelmaking raw material from top supplier Australia, where the cyclone season has begun.
* The panamax index gained 8 points, or 1.1%, to 767 points, snapping a 15-session losing streak.
* Average daily earnings for panamaxes, which usually carry coal or grain cargoes of about 60,000 tonnes to 70,000 tonnes, rose $65 to $6,899.
* The supramax index fell 3 points to 563. (Reporting by Anjishnu Mondal in Bengaluru; Editing by Aditya Soni)
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