Bloomberg News

U.S. Gulf Oil Premiums Strengthen as WTI-Brent Spread Widens

December 14, 2011

Dec. 14 (Bloomberg) -- U.S. Gulf oil premiums strengthened as the difference between West Texas Intermediate and Brent widened.

The gap between the two benchmark crude futures for January delivery increased 61 cents to $9.97 a barrel. The spread has narrowed 64 percent since reaching a record of $27.88 a barrel Oct. 14.

When Brent increases versus WTI, it strengthens the value of low-sulfur U.S. grades that compete with West African oil priced against the European benchmark.

Heavy Louisiana Sweet’s premium widened 5 cents to $11.60 a barrel at 1:34 p.m. in New York, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. Light Louisiana Sweet’s premium to WTI added 5 cents to $11.30 a barrel.

Thunder Horse’s premium to WTI increased 50 cents to $9.75. The premium for Mars Blend added 20 cents to $7.20 a barrel. Poseidon strengthened 45 cents to $6.75 a barrel over WTI.

Southern Green Canyon’s premium increased 45 cents to $6.75 a barrel and West Texas Sour’s discount was unchanged at 85 cents.

The discount for Western Canada Select widened 80 cents to $16.15.

Syncrude’s premium gained 10 cents to $2.55 a barrel. Syncrude is a light, low-sulfur synthetic oil derived from the tar sands in Alberta.

--Editors: David Marino, Richard Stubbe

To contact the reporter on this story: Aaron Clark in New York at

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Dan Stets at

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