Baltic Dry Index Almost Doubles In Less Than Two Months

The Baltic Dry Index - the benchmark guide to drybulk shipping rates on 40 routes across the world - is up 2.8% at 4230 today, it's thirteenth day of straight increases.

The index has now risen an astonishing 95% in less than two months, from a low of just 2163 set as recently as September 24th. We are still however, a very long way from the index's all-time high of 11,793 set in May 2008.

Strong Chinese demand for iron ore and coal, growing port congestion in China and Australia and tight ship availability have helped drive a rally in recent days.

While iron ore has been the primary driver of the index’s growth, coal is expected to kick in during the coming weeks as China and east Asia faces up to an unseasonably early winter with most of northern China reporting temperatures in minus territory for much of the last week. Free heating in China’s northern regions started yesterday.