London: The Baltic Dry Index, or BDI, a measure of shipping costs for commodities, advanced to its longest winning streak in almost three years on demand for vessels to haul iron ore to make steel.
The index tracking transport costs on international trade routes rose on Wednesday by 185 points, or 4.5%, to 4,291, according to the Baltic Exchange.
That’s a 23rd straight gain and the longest climb since July 2006.
Rates for capesize ships, typical iron ore carriers and the biggest in the gauge, rose 6.8% to $93,197 (around Rs44 lakh) a day.
Smaller panamaxes that compete for cargoes increased 5.3% to $28,110.
“Speaking to industry contacts, we sense the BDI is likely to continue to rebound in the near term, driven by continued demand for iron ore as well as congestion in China’s ports,” Jim Wong, a Hong Kong-based analyst with Nomura Holdings Inc., wrote in a report on Wednesday.
Chinese purchases of iron ore have increased as the government spends 4 trillion yuan ($586 billion) on housing, transportation and other projects to support the country’s economy.
Imports of the material rose to a record for a third consecutive month in April, national customs data show.