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Capesize Rental Rates Rise for Third Day as More Ships Hired

Rates to hire capesize vessels advanced for a third day on signs of increased demand to transport iron ore, used to make steel.

Daily rates for the ships rose 0.2 percent to $30,975, for a 4.4 percent gain in three days, according to the Baltic Exchange in London. Seven capesizes were booked today for spot, or single-voyage, loadings, up from one on Oct. 19, Omar Nokta, a New York-based analyst at investment bank Dahlman Rose & Co., wrote in an e-mailed report today.

“World iron-ore exports are set to record a new all-time high in the fourth-quarter 2011,” SSY Consultancy & Research said in an e-mailed report today. The company is part of Simpson, Spence & Young Ltd., the world’s second-largest shipbroker.

Capesize rates more than tripled since Aug. 1. Four ships were booked to haul iron ore today on the Western Australia-to-China iron-ore route, Nokta said. China produced 47 percent of the world’s crude steel in August, according to World Steel Association figures.

Fourth-quarter forward freight agreements decreased 2.2 percent to $26,125 a day, according to data from Clarkson Plc, the world’s largest shipbroker. Traders use FFAs to bet on or hedge future shipping costs.

Capesizes are the biggest vessels tracked by the Baltic Dry Index, a broader gauge of commodity-shipping rates, which declined 0.4 percent to 2,153 points. It’s up 21 percent this year while capesizes climbed 55 percent.

Daily rents for panamax ships, the largest that can navigate the Panama Canal, decreased 1.6 percent to $16,215. That’s up 10 percent this year. Supramaxes declined 0.3 percent to $16,804. Handysize ships, the smallest tracked by the index, decreased 0.2 percent to $11,901.

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