Baltic index falls on lower capesize vessel rates

July 8 (Reuters) - The Baltic Exchange’s main sea freight index slipped on Wednesday, as falling rates for capesize vessels offset gains in the panamax and supramax segments.

* The Baltic dry index, which tracks rates for ships ferrying dry bulk commodities and reflects rates for capesize, panamax and supramax vessels, fell 100 points, or 5.1%, to 1,849.

* The Baltic capesize index lost 398 points, or 10%, to 3,570, hitting its lowest since June 17.

* Average daily earnings for capesizes, which typically transport cargoes of 170,000 tonnes to 180,000 tonnes, including iron ore and coal, dropped by $3,301 to $29,610.

* However, rising demand for iron ore from China, after the economy opened up following months of virus-led lockdown, has helped the capesize index gain 83.1% so far this year.

* The panamax index rose 4.2%, or 60 points, to 1,517.

* Average daily earnings for panamaxes, which usually carry coal or grain cargoes of about 60,000 tonnes to 70,000 tonnes, increased by $538 to $13,651.

* The supramax index rose 48 points, or 6.6%, to 773. (Reporting by Diptendu Lahiri in Bengaluru; Editing by Krishna Chandra Eluri)