FFA market shifts further towards clearing

The Baltic Dry Index (BDI) - which measures the cost of shipping 'dry' commodities (such as iron ore, coal, grain) across the globe - plunged 94% from 11,793 on May 20 to 663 on December 5 last year as global trade slowed sharply. Average weekly volumes of dry bulk FFAs - the standard derivative contract for dry commodities - fell by 38% in the final quarter of 2008 compared with the first three quarters, from 46,053 trades to 28,349. FFAs on capesize vessels - 100,000 dead weight tons or over i