TANKERS Easier conditions for VLCCs out of Arabian Gulf, with recent rates hovering around W/S 90 for destinations East and W/S 80 for West. – Stable conditions for Suezmaxes out of W. Africa; no fresh inquiry. Rates near W/S 260-265 for US Gulf, while Exxon for a Med.-destined cargo paid W/S 240, having received six offers in total. – Aframaxes weaker out of N. Sea, with rates around W/S 230-235 for 80,000-ton cargoes and expected to slip further. – Med. stable, especially for fixtures out of B. Sea, with recent rates above W/S 310. Normal cross-trip cargoes are being fixed at W/S 275-280 levels. – Caribs also stable in thinning inquiry. The 70,000-ton cargo liftings are being fixed at W/S 360-375. – In the Med., Tamoil for 80,000 tons of cargo, loading Jan. 14, Libya, discharging Med., has fixed M/T «Livia» at W/S 265. – In the Cont., BHP has fixed M/T «Nordic Yukon» for 80,000 tons of cargo, loading Jan. 20, discharging UKC, at W/S 257.5. – In Caribs, Stasco for 70,000 tons of cargo, loading Jan. 15, East Coast Mexico, discharging US Gulf, has fixed M/T «Sanko Dynasty» at W/S 370. – In W. Africa, Itochu has fixed M/T «Genmar Transport» for 130,000 tons of cargo, loading Feb. 20, discharging Indonesia, at W/S 197.5. – In Arabian Gulf, S. Oil has fixed M/T «Nuri» for 270,000 tons of cargo, loading Jan. 23, discharging S. Korea, at W/S 90. DRY CARGO As expected, a slow start for Capers due to the recent holidays. Rates remain strong, especially in the Atlantic, with M/V «Millennium Star,» 139,650 dwt, built 1983, delivery beg. Jan., Rotterdam, for a transatlantic round-trip being fixed at USD 70,000 daily. – Brokers are talking about USD 100,000 daily for voyages with destinations East, having encountered at least 13 cargoes ready to be fixed with loading dates end Jan. – early Feb. – On Panamaxes, despite last week’s ease in spot rates, the majority of fixtures are at interest levels. – On Panamaxes in Far East, Mol Navix has fixed M/V «Guinomar Bastion,» 74,193 dwt, built 2001, delivery Taiwan Jan. 5-10, trip via East Coast Australia, redelivery Japan, at USD 40,250 daily. – In Atlantic, Bocimar has fixed M/V «Armia Krajowa,» 73,505 dwt, built 1991, delivery Sweden Jan. 8-10, trip via Venezuela, redelivery UKC, at USD 34,500 daily. – On smaller sizes, M/V «Coral Gem,» 45,320 dwt, built 1995, delivery Philippines beg. January, redelivery Far East, was fixed at USD 22,500 daily. – On coal, Taipower has fixed oak tonnage for 120,000 tons of cargo, loading Feb. 1-14 Australia, discharging Taiwan, at $26.20 per ton with 1-day load and 28,000 tons discharge. – On ore cargoes, Baosteel for 150,000 tons of cargo, loading Brazil Jan. 20-30, discharging China, has fixed M/V «Yue Shan» at USD 34.00 per ton with two-day load and 30,000 tons discharge.