HOUSTON (ICIS)--Eastbound transatlantic chemical freight rates slipped this week on a break in traffic on the route, brokers and shipping sources said on Friday.
Rates on 2,000-tonne shipments going east fell to $67-72/tonne (€49-53/tonne) from the previous $70-75/tonne. Freight charges on 5,000-tonne cargoes also dropped to $53-58/tonne from $55-60 previously.
The latest SSY Base Oil Report said 5,000-tonne rates might even slip below $50/tonne in some instances going from Houston to Rotterdam.
A report from SPI Marine said spot activity to Europe has been sluggish this week and last and that traffic on the eastbound leg showed the same drop in late 2012.
“There are the occasional enquiries for styrene and BTX,” the report noted. “However, this seems to be more tire kicking than anything else. The European economy is still languishing so it should not be a surprise that market activity is slow.”
($1 = €0.74)