Baltic index marks 5th straight weekly gain on capesize strength

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Jan 15 (Reuters) - The Baltic Exchange's main sea freight index retreated on Friday, but still notched up an over 9% weekly rise driven by strong overall gains in the capesize segment.

* The Baltic dry index, tracking rates for capesize, panamax and supramax vessels ferrying dry bulk commodities, shed 38 points, or 2.1%, to 1,754, but firmed 9.2% this week.

* The main index has gained for seven out of the last eight weeks.

* The capesize index dropped 119 points, or about 4%, to 2,893, but was up 13.5% for the week.

* The index rose for the fourth week in a row, helped by Chinese demand for coal shipments amid a surge in power consumption.

* ​Average daily earnings for capesizes, which typically transport 150,000-tonne cargoes such as iron ore and coal, fell $990 to $23,989.

* The panamax index edged 2 points lower, or 0.1%, to 1,616, but ended the week up 3.7%.

* Average daily earnings for panamaxes, which usually carry coal or grain cargoes of about 60,000 tonnes to 70,000 tonnes, were down $17 at $14,545.

* The supramax index gained 6 points to 1,086, its highest in over 14 months, and rose 5.5% this week. (Reporting by Bharat Govind Gautam in Bengaluru; Editing by Maju Samuel)