Bloomberg News

Europe Gasoline Gains; Eni to Halt Venice Refinery: Oil Products

January 18, 2013

European gasoline barges rose to the highest in a week. February swaps traded at a discount to March, keeping the market in contango for an eighth day.

Eni SpA, Italy’s largest oil company, plans to halt its Venice refinery from today until Jan. 26, the local authority said.

Light Products

Gasoline in the Amsterdam-Rotterdam-Antwerp oil hub changed hands at $973 a metric ton, according to a survey of the Argus Bulletin Board. That’s up from $965 to $972 yesterday and is the highest since Jan. 10, data compiled by Bloomberg show.

Total SA sold the Eurobob grade, to which ethanol is added to finished fuel, to Trafigura Beheer BV, the survey showed. Barges typically comprise 1,000 to 2,000 tons.

February gasoline swaps traded at $976.80 a ton, reflecting a $3.42 discount, or contango, to March swaps, according to data from PVM Oil Associates Ltd., a broker in London. The first- and second-month swaps moved into this market structure on Jan. 9, which may signal falling near-term demand or rising supply.

Gasoline’s crack, or premium to Brent crude, fell 12 cents to $6.84 a barrel as of 11:14 a.m. local time, PVM data showed.

Naphtha’s crack, or discount to Brent, narrowed 16 cents to $7.37 barrel. That’s the smallest spread in a week and compares with $7.54 yesterday.

Middle Distillates

Gasoil for February delivery rose $1, or 0.1 percent, to $953.50 a ton as of 12:35 p.m. on the ICE Futures Europe exchange in London. The contract’s backwardation, or premium to March, was unchanged at $6.75 a ton. This market structure can signal rising near-term consumption or falling stockpiles.

Gasoil’s crack dropped to $16.45 a barrel versus $16.73 at 4:30 p.m. yesterday. Brent fell 0.4 percent to $110.64 a barrel.

Refineries

Eni’s 80,000 barrel-a-day Venice refinery will flare gases during the planned outage, according to a statement on Venice’s city authority website.

Some European refiners have reduced production and more will probably curb operations if profits don’t recover, according to the International Energy Agency. The cuts come during the region’s winter, when demand for heating fuel usually rises.

“Weak demand, in part due to a mild winter and the progressive return from maintenance of European and Russian refineries, has driven down European refining margins by $3 a barrel in northwest Europe and $2 a barrel in the Mediterranean,” the Paris-based energy adviser said in its monthly oil market report today.

To contact the reporter on this story: Lananh Nguyen in London at lnguyen35@bloomberg.net

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


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