The average spot rates for handysize bulkers continued to rise over the past week as a result of plenty of fixture activity in the spot and period markets.

The Baltic Exchange’s Handysize 7TC of spot-rate averages across seven key routes gained 10% over the seven-day period to $11,361 per day on Friday, marking its highest point since late December 2022 and propelling an upward trend that began in mid-February.

“Positivity continued this week,” Baltic Exchange analysts wrote on Friday in their weekly wrap-up of the dry bulk market.

They rattled off five spot fixtures that sent cargoes to and from the Americas at above-market rates, including Martrade hiring Fukuyo Kisen’s 40,020-dwt Norse Altimira (built 2022) on Monday to send grain from the US Gulf to Morocco at $15,000 per day.

On the period front, an undisclosed charterer hired Wisdom Marine Lines’ 39,670-dwt Bunun Xcel (built 2023) on Monday at $16,300 per day for 11 to 14 months. The charterer will take delivery of the ship during the first half of April.

Average rates for the other bulker sizes also rose during the week, but they also fell on Thursday and Friday.

The Capesize 5TC rose 9.7% over the week to land at $15,867 per day on Friday, while the Panamax 5TC improved 4.2% to reach $15,509 per day.

The Supramax 10TC gained 10% over the week to achieve $12,500 per day on Friday.