The panamax bulker market reached its highest point in seven months on Thursday as it experienced what analysts described as two favourable conditions: robust demand and healthy supply.

The Baltic Exchange’s Panamax 5TC set of spot-rate averages across five key routes rose 6.3% to about $16,200 per day on Thursday to achieve the highest level since coming in at almost $16,700 per day on 11 April.

The Panamax 5TC has been on a steady rise since landing at just over $13,000 per day on 6 November.

“The North Atlantic returned again the headline rates and moves, as another day of healthy volumes gave further impetus to rates with tonnage count continuing to appear extremely tight,” Baltic Exchange analysts wrote on Thursday in their daily take on the dry bulk market.

“Asia bared its teeth too, with solid levels of demand to maintain and improve rates, despite a slower day of activity fundamentals pointed to firmer rates.”

ASL Bulk fetched the highest fixture of the day, according to the exchange, by reletting Diana Shipping’s 82,200-dwt Medusa (built 2010) to trader Archer-Daniels-Midland at $24,500 per day for a trip that ballasted from the French port of L’Orient to ship grain from the US Gulf Coast to the Far East.

The ship is scheduled to be loaded from 24 to 30 November.

The average spot rate for the round-trip P1A route between the US Gulf Coast and Europe took the largest leap of all panamax spot-rate averages tracked by the exchange, jumping 11.1% to $21,500 per day. It is the highest it has been in 16 months.

The other segments in dry bulk shipping also posted gains on Thursday, albeit more modest.

The Capesize 5TC rose 3.5% to nearly $22,100 per day on Thursday, while the Supramax 10TC gained 3.2% to just under $13,000 per day.

The Handysize 7TC edged up 0.8% to nearly $10,700 per day on Thursday.