The Baltic Dry Index has been in new all time low record territory since Dec 14 2015, hitting its nineteenth all time low. Before that the all time low was 509 on Feb. 19 2015. Today, February 3, it hit a value of 303, a 40 percent drop since Dec. 14. In the spring of 2008 it hit a record high of 11793 before dropping to below 700 a couple of months before the financial crash of 2008.
What is the BDI you say?
From the Economist: THE Baltic Dry Index (BDI), which measures the rates for chartering the giant ships that transport iron ore, coal and grain, has long attracted the attention of commentators hoping to take the pulse of world trade. The cost of shifting the basic raw materials that are the ingredients of steel, energy and food supposedly provides a leading indicator of the state of the world economy. If so the forecast would suggest that a storm at sea will shortly make landfall. The index, a composite of rates charged on a variety of important trade routes, has hit an all-time low, after sinking by 65% in the past 13 weeks alone. Even in the depths of the financial crisis shipping rates kept their heads further above water. Why are they so remarkably low now?
That was written Mar. 10 2015. Things are much worse now.
At 303, it stands 40% below its December 14 value, and 97.43% below its all time peak value a few months before the crash of 08.
The worldwide recession is coming, and it will be severe.
Update 1: The BDI index is at 298 on Thursday 2/4, down another 1.65% a new all time low.
Update 2: The BDI index hit 297 on Friday 2/5, a new all time low.
Update 3: The BDI index hit 293 on Monday 2/8. How low can it get?
Update 4: The BDI index hit 291 on Tuesday 2/9. Down, down, down, down, down.
Updqte 5. The BDI index hit 290 on Wednesday 2/10. Can it still go lower? The losses mount.