The Famous Baltic Dry Index Climbs 16% In One Week

At least one measure of global economic activity is not showing recession — in fact, it could be showing the reverse.

According to Seeking Alpha (via @carney), the Baltic Dry Index jumped up by 16% last week, suggesting that the global economy could be starting to move in a positive direction.

The index, which measures the cost of transporting raw materials by sea, is regarded by some economists as a “bellwether of economic activity.” Others criticise the index for its volatility and questionable relationship to economic growth.

Despite rising recently, the measure is nowhere close to the levels it reached earlier this year, when markets showed signs of recovering from the economic slowdown of 2008.

The BDI came under the microscope in 2008, when it fell 90% as the global recession set in. Check out what it looks like now.


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