Jan. 31 (Bloomberg) -- Asia’s naphtha crack narrowed for the first time in four days. SK Innovation Co. sold gasoil to Hin Leong Trading Pte in Singapore.
Naphtha’s premium to London-traded Brent crude futures increased to $135.94 a metric ton at 2:45 p.m. Singapore time from $143.11 yesterday, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. The spread has widened 41 percent this month.
Glencore International Plc sold 25,000 tons of naphtha for delivery in the second half of March to Cargill Inc. at $985 a ton, according to a Bloomberg survey of traders who monitored transactions on the Platts window. Royal Dutch Shell Plc and Itochu Corp. agreed to swap a naphtha cargo for the second half of March with a lot for the first half of April at $5.50 a ton.
Shell, the biggest reported buyer of 95-RON gasoline in Singapore this month, bought 50,000 barrels of the grade from Total SA at $125.90 and another 50,000 barrels from the Paris- based refiner at $125.50. BP sold 50,000 barrels of 97-RON to Shell at $128.70 a barrel.
Hin Leong Trading Pte bought two 150,000-barrel cargoes of gasoil, or diesel, with 0.5 percent sulfur in Singapore, according to the Bloomberg survey. SK Innovation sold one shipment for loading from Feb. 15 to Feb. 19 at 35 cents a barrel over benchmark quotes. Shell sold the other cargo at a 30-cent premium to the benchmark.
Gasoil’s premium to Dubai crude fell 48 cents, or 2.5 percent, to $18.45 a barrel at 2:33 p.m. Singapore time, PVM data show. This crack spread, a measure of refining profit, has widened 6.5 percent this month.
Jet fuel traded 90 cents below gasoil, the biggest discount since Jan. 17, according to PVM. The regrade was at a discount of 20 cents on Dec. 30.
Petrochina sold 20,000 tons of 180-centistoke fuel oil to Hin Leong at $14.50 a ton over benchmark quotes, according to the Bloomberg survey. The cargo is for Feb. 24 to Feb. 28 loading.
Fuel oil was at a discount of 17 cents to Dubai crude from parity yesterday, based on data from PVM Oil Associates Ltd., a broker. The discount has narrowed 89 percent this month, the biggest monthly improvement in the crack spread since Bloomberg records that started August 2006.
The premium of 180-centistoke fuel oil to 380-centistoke grade fell 75 cents, or 6.4 percent, to $11 a ton, PVM said. This viscosity spread increased 2.3 percent this month, indicating prices of power-generation fuel are outpacing marine fuel oil.
Glencore bought 55,000 metric tons of naphtha for loading in February from Reliance Industries Ltd., owner of the world’s largest refining complex, said two traders. Glencore paid about $32 a ton more than Middle East prices for the cargo, the traders said.
Petroleo Brasileiro SA’s Japanese unit plans to idle its Nishihara refinery in Okinawa, southwestern Japan, from April 2 to April 28 for regular maintenance, Nansei Sekiyu K.K. spokesman Nelson Toyomura said.
JX Nippon Oil & Energy Corp. plans to shut its Marifu refinery in western Japan for maintenance between Feb. 4 and March 9, Senior Vice President Tsutomu Sugimori said.
--With assistance from Pratish Narayanan in Mumbai. Editor: Mike Anderson, Christian Schmollinger.
#<125964.37656188.8.131.52.14779.25># -0- Jan/31/2012 11:26 GMT
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