The Baltic Exchange’s main sea freight index rose to a two-and-half month high on October 23, helped by fresh cargo activities in Brazil and Australia, Exim News Service reports.
The overall index, which gauges the cost of shipping resources, including iron ore, cement, grain, coal and fertiliser, rose by 1.4 per cent or 42 points to 3,043 points in a seventh session of gains and was at its highest since August 5.
Brokers said that firmer demand to lease ships in the Atlantic had helped in the rise of the index, adding that the interest had given a lift to rates for Capesize vessels typically hauling coal and iron ore cargoes.
In recent weeks, there had been increased demand for iron ore in Europe, South Korea, Japan and Taiwan. Chinese iron ore and coal imports were also picking up, brokers and analysts pointed out.
The main sea freight index hit a more than eight-month high on June 3 of 4,291, but has been erratic since then.
"The Capes are looking positive, because Australia has been pretty active," a broker said.
Cargo activity from Brazil to China and the other Far Eastern destinations had also helped in the increase.