Recession Warning?

Back in 2009, the Baltic Dry Index seemed to be everyone's new favorite economic indicator, with recoveries in this metric of dry bulk shipping supposedly the harbinger of prosperity.  So now that it is hitting record lows, I don't see it in the news much.

  • DaveK

    Well, ZeroHedge is the place to go if you want your daily dose of apocalyptic gloom and doom.

  • herdgadfly

    So there are two million naval vessels trolling the high seas and not a single one in the Atlantic carrying cargo between North America and Europe. Uh - right!

  • marque2

    I am not surprised it is dropping again, Europe's economy is faltering and China went I to a recession. There are signs the US is slowing as well. Where have you been the last two weeks. I don't know why no-one is mentioning it, but if the Baltic dry index is at a low, it is quite prescient.

  • John O.

    Yeah I read the article and all I could gather from it was unnecessary panic warnings. There's a number of changes in the world economy right now but I find it hard to believe that there's no ships running any cargo of any type across the oceans.

  • sean2829

    There is a similar index and that is the amount of good hauled by railroads and Bank of America issued a report that Bloomberg reported on yesterday. http://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2016-01-11/bank-of-america-rail-traffic-is-saying-something-worrying-about-the-u-s-economy I suspect the loss of coal and oil transport and reduce grain export is driving this decline but even the intermodals are down 1.7%. So more than 1 transportation indicators are there for a slow down.

  • Mercury

    Price is a function of supply AND demand so low prices for bulk shipping could be the result of low demand, high supply (of ships) or both. It's probably both in this case.

  • xtmar

    Is it better to call seven of the last four recessions, or zero of the last four recessions?

  • Hal_10000

    This looks like a garbage story. Snopes has an article today pointing out that the AIS only tracks coastal traffic. If you look at the satellite data, there are thousands of ships in transit.

  • bloke in france

    Oddly, both Eurotunnel and the ferry companies reported record cross channel freight volumes last year, despite migrant interruptions.

    A spot index of a notoriously cyclical business with inelastic supply may not be the most reliable indicator. Maybe just no long term charters asked for at the moment.

  • Orion Henderson

    I think they were conflating raw materials with all cargo. IE, no iron ore, copper, etc, happens to be in transit-largely because China's demand has been shrinking rapidly. Other cargo-finished goods, oil, etc, is moving along. Theoretically, raw materials at a standstill could mean finished products won't ship at a later date-but people in the US sure are purchasing things.

  • obloodyhell

    }}} Back in 2009, the Baltic Dry Index seemed to be everyone's new favorite economic indicator, with recoveries in this metric of dry bulk shipping supposedly the harbinger of prosperity. So now that it is hitting record lows, I don't see it in the news much.

    Yeah, it was ... and what, recovery, exactly, in 2009 happened that everyone seems to have missed?

    Maybe everyone is ignoring it NOW because it was blatantly wrong THEN....? Yeah, that sounds a lot more likely....

  • chembot

    I guess I view it like a broken clock. It may tell time twice a day, but is of little use in informing your life.

    The articles kind of remind me of the loonies with the sandwich boards proclaiming "THE END IS NEAR". Maybe they are right, but I choose to live a less angst ridden life, untroubled by counting silly metal bars, worrying about zionist conspiracies, or inside job of 9/11

    http://www.propheciesofdaniel.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/05/prophet-of-doom.jpg

  • Peter BargainValue

    Maybe not in the news, but it is a popular topic among the bloggers. Especially among the doomsters. If you would like to see this subject from the another perspective, check out this link:
    http://bargainvalue.co.uk/what-is-going-on-with-baltic-dry-index/