Flurry of Vessels Booked for Euro Gas Exports
Gasoline barge prompt cracks in northwest Europe gained on Monday, supported by exports to West Africa, the United States and elsewhere as demand builds ahead of the peak summer season.
Reuters shipping data showed a flurry of new vessels booked to carry gasoline or its components. Litasco booked a tanker to carry gasoline to West Africa in recent days, while another cargo was headed for the Mediterranean, where demand has been robust, the data showed.
PMI booked another for Mexico and Phillips 66 also fixed a cargo to cross the Atlantic, it showed. "The arb still looks workable," said one trader. In the Mediterranean, Trafigura bid at about $988 a tonne cif Med but no deal was done in the price assessment window, said another gasoline trader. In Friday's window, BP bought a cargo from Litasco at about $987 a tonne cif Med, he said.
There was little change in the naphtha market, which has been receiving some support from Asia, where there is demand for European cargoes due to refinery maintenance. The East-West arbitrage is considered open to many at around $14.50 a tonne for May and $15.75 a tonne for June, though traders in Asia said on Friday they did not expect enough cargoes to arrive.
"Northwest Europe feels fairly balanced at the moment," said one trader.
* Gunvor sold one barge of benchmark Eurobob to Vitol in the
Platts price assessment window at $979 a tonne fob ARA, down
from $986 a tonne on Friday.
* Outside the window, seven barges of gasoline traded at
$978-$989 a tonne fob ARA, similar to Friday's range of
$979-$988 a tonne.
* By the market close, the May swap was trading at around
$980.75 a tonne, down from $986 a tonne on Friday.
* Two barges of premium unleaded gasoline traded at $1,000 a
tonne fob ARA, a similar level to Friday's $1,000-$1,002 a
tonne. Phillips bought both barges from Argos and Litasco.
* By 1705 GMT, Eurobob's crack to dated Brent <BFO-> was at
$11.537 a barrel, up from around $10.544 a barrel on Friday.
* Brent crude oil futures were down $1.11 at $105.61
a barrel at 1706 GMT.
* U.S. RBOB gasoline futures in New York were down
0.56 percent at $2.9150 a gallon, and the prompt crack
<RB-CL1=R> was flat at $21.97 a barrel.
* One cargo of naphtha traded on Monday at $916 a tonne cif
NWE, down from $920.50-$921 a tonne on Friday. BASF sold to
* The naphtha prompt crack was a little stronger at around
minus $2.69 a barrel, compared to about minus $3.18 a barrel on
Friday, according to Reuters calculations.
(Reporting by Lin Noueihed, editing by David Evans)