Bloomberg News

PetroChina Buys Europe Diesel; Gasoline at Record: Oil Products

April 03, 2012

PetroChina Co. purchased a diesel cargo for a second day for delivery into the Mediterranean at a higher price.

Gasoline barges advanced to a record in northwest Europe. Gasoil moved into contango for the first time in four days on the ICE Futures Europe exchange in London.

Light Products

Gasoline (MOGEEURB) for immediate loading in Amsterdam-Rotterdam- Antwerp advanced to as much as $1,220 a metric ton, according to a survey of brokers and traders monitoring the Argus Bulletin Board. The previous record for gasoline of equivalent quality was $1,216 in July 2008, data from Argus Media show.

Trafigura Beheer BV purchased at least 9,000 tons of the 20,000 tons that changed hands. Vitol Group and Morgan Stanley sold the Eurobob grade, to which ethanol is added to make finished fuel that’s sold at the pump.

Premium unleaded traded at $1,210 to $1,220 a ton, according to a similar survey of the Platts pricing window which ends at 4:30 p.m. London time. Those prices are for barge lots, usually of 1,000 or 2,000 tons.

Gasoline’s crack, or premium to Brent crude, rose to $13.56 a barrel from $13.47 yesterday, according to data from PVM Oil Associates Ltd., a London-based broker.

Naphtha’s discount to Brent narrowed to $4.57 a barrel from $5.50 yesterday, PVM data show.

Vitol bought a cargo of naphtha from Trafigura at $1,079 a ton, the survey of Platts showed. That compares with a March 28 deal at $1,058.

Middle Distillates

PetroChina bought 30,000 tons of diesel from Royal Dutch Shell Plc at a premium of $33 a ton to April gasoil, priced for delivery to Iskenderun in Turkey, according to the Platts survey. That compares with yesterday’s deal at a $31 premium for delivery to the French port of Lavera.

Diesel barges traded at premiums of $23.50 and $24 a ton to April gasoil, the survey showed. That compares with deals yesterday at $23 to $25.

A barge of jet fuel changed hands at $76 a ton more than April gasoil, the survey showed. Air France-KLM sold to Shell. That compares with March 30 trades at a $73 premium.

A gasoil barge traded at a discount of $1.75 a ton to April futures, it showed. That compares with yesterday’s deals at discounts of $2 and $2.50.

Gasoil for April delivery increased 0.5 percent to $1,029.75 a ton on the ICE Futures Europe exchange as of 5:16 p.m. London time. The May contract was at $1,030.75 a ton, moving the two contracts into a market structure known as contango. That can signal falling demand or rising supply.

Gasoil’s crack, a measure of refining profitability, shrank to $13.32 a barrel from $13.42 yesterday. Brent crude fell 0.3 percent to $125.10 a barrel.

Residues

High-sulfur fuel oil changed hands from $704.50 to $707.50 a ton, according to the survey of Platts. That compares with deals yesterday at $702.50 to $705.

Tenders

Societe Anonyme de Gestion de Stocks de Securite, or Sagess as the manager of France’s strategic stockpiles is known, has yet to take delivery of the diesel it purchased in February, according to an official.

“As of the beginning of April, no delivery has been made,” Jean-Marc Tenneson, executive officer of France’s Comite Professionnel des Stocks Strategiques Petroliers, or CPSSP as the body which controls Sagess is known, said today by phone from Paris.

Sagess issued a tender in February for 350,000 cubic meters of diesel, or 295,750 tons, to be delivered to the southern French port of Lavera from March to June to cover the nation’s strategic inventory requirement by July 1, Tenneson said. Two companies won the tender, he said, declining to reveal their identities.

To contact the reporter on this story: Nidaa Bakhsh in London at nbakhsh@bloomberg.net;

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Stephen Voss at sev@bloomberg.net


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