The Baltic Exchange’s main dry bulk sea freight index rose more than 6% to its highest in about a week on Friday, aided by a jump in the capesize and panamax segments.

The overall index, which factors in rates for capesize, panamax, supramax and handysize vessels, rose 221 points, or 6.1%, to 3,864.

The main index fell about 2% this week.

“This upcycle in asset values confirms that supply/demand fundamentals look very promising for future prospects of dry bulk earnings,” Athens-based EastGate Shipbrokers said in a note.

Sentiment in the sector remains buoyant as global economy and seaborne trade are both recovering from major pandemic challenges, EastGate Shipbrokers added.

The capesize index advanced for a second straight session to 605 points, adding 12.2%, to 5,567.

But the index fell 1% for the week.

Average daily earnings for capesizes, which transport 150,000-tonne cargoes such as iron ore and coal, increased $5,021 to $46,172.

Iron ore futures in top steel producer China were headed for a second consecutive weekly loss, with the benchmark Dalian price hovering near its lowest in seven months on fears of more steel production curbs.

The panamax index also rose for a second straight session, gaining 85 points, or 2.4%, to 3,595, its highest since Sept. 3.

The panamax segment registered a 0.3% weekly decline.

Average daily earnings for panamaxes, which usually carry coal or grain cargoes of about 60,000 tonnes to 70,000 tonnes, increased $767 to $32,356.

Among smaller vessels, the supramax index extended its fall to a straight eight sessions and dipped 9 points to a more than three-week low of 3,170. The index fell 5.3% this week.

(Reporting by Rahul Paswan; Editing by Shinjini Ganguli)

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