Sept 26 (Reuters) - The Baltic Exchange’s main sea freight index, which tracks rates for ships carrying dry bulk commodities, fell on Thursday on lacklustre demand for capesize vessels as China imposed output curbs on steel mills.
* The Baltic index, which reflects rates for capesize, panamax and supramax vessels, fell 90 points, or 4.4%, to 1,963 points. This marks the index’s largest percentage fall in two months.
* The capesize index declined 228 points, or 6%, to 3,601 points, registering its largest daily percentage decline since July 24.
* The average daily earnings for capesizes, which typically transports 170,000-180,000 tonne cargoes such as iron ore and coal, dived by $1,847 to $27,199.
* With China heading towards the Golden Week, demand is coming down, said Peter Sand, chief shipping analyst at BIMCO.
* We could see another week of sliding in the Baltic index and capesizes before markets recover again, Sand added.
* Cities surrounding Beijing have imposed output curbs on steel mills, coking coal producers and other industries to improve air quality as the nation prepares to celebrate the 70th anniversary of the founding of the People’s Republic of China on Oct. 1.
* The panamax index dropped 54 points, or 2.8%, to 1,846 points, its lowest level since Aug. 8.
* Average daily earnings for panamaxes, which usually carries coal or grain cargoes of about 60,000 tonnes to 70,000 tonnes, fell by $424 to $14,781.
* The supramax index dropped 10 points to 1,272 points. (Reporting by Nakul Iyer and Harshith Aranya in Bengaluru; Editing by Maju Samuel)