TANKERS The free-fall in the Aframax market in the Med. continues. Rates are definitely lower than last done at W/S 200, with Erg countering for 80,000 tons Arzew / Italy double tonnage at W/S 150. – N. Sea is expecting also to fill the Med. market pressure, with some owners considering ballast to do N. Sea cross voyages. Rates are presently at W/S 225 for 80,000-ton cargoes. – Caribs has limited inquiry. Marathon has fixed M/T «Genmar Sun» for 70,000 tons of cargo, loading Feb. 15, discharging US Gulf, at W/S 275. – VLCCs stable, as well as Suezmaxes out of W. Africa. – Stasco for 270,000 tons of cargo, loading March 11, discharging Far East, has fixed M/T «Iran Nesa» at W/S 165, while on Suezmax Repsol for 130,000 tons of cargo, loading March 3, discharging Spain, has fixed M/T «Genmar Macedon» at W/S 185. – In the Med., Repsol for 80,000 tons of cargo, loading Feb. 15 Egypt, discharging Spain, has fixed M/T «Trident Hope» at W/S 200. – On Suezmax, Irving for 130,000 tons of cargo, loading Feb. 25 Algeria, discharging Canada, has fixed M/T «Genmar Spyridon» at W/S 192.5. – In the Cont., Stasco has fixed M/T «Four Island» for 80,000 tons of cargo, loading Feb. 25, discharging US Gulf, at W/S 255. – In Caribs, Atmi has fixed M/T «Rich Duchess» for 70,000 tons of cargo, loading Feb. 29, discharging US Gulf, at W/S 267.5. – In W. Africa, Hess has fixed Genmar tonnage for 130,000 tons of cargo, loading March 3, discharging Caribs, at W/S 187.5. DRY CARGO Capesize rates remain strong, although some of the very early ships in both oceans might have to accept lower rates. – In the Far East, Daiichi has fixed M/V «New Brisk,» 168,421 dwt, built 1995, delivery Japan Feb. 17-25, for Australian round-trip voyage at USD 87,500 daily. – Panamax rates are lower in the Atlantic, as several unfixed early ships overhang the market. Owners up to now have largely been relying on mineral cargoes, with grain business in limited supply. – In the Atlantic, Daeyang has fixed M/V «Sun Harvest,» 64,714 dwt, built 1982, delivery Ireland, trip via US Gulf, redelivery Far East, at USD 44,500 daily, while in Far East Norden has fixed M/V «Tai Promotion,» 77,000 dwt, delivery Feb. 5-15 Taiwan, for 3-5 month period at USD 53,000 daily. – On smaller sizes, Cosbulk has fixed M/V «Pilion,» 50,383 dwt, built 1994, delivery Far East June/July, for 12-14 month period at USD 35,250 daily. – On coal cargoes, Cobelfret for 140,000 tons of cargo, loading March 6-20 Richards Bay, discharging Rotterdam & Antwerp, has paid USD 28.00 per ton with 2 days load and 25,000 tons discharge.