Asia oil/products: Crude ease off, gasoline cracks firm as gasoil softens
London (Quantum Commodity Intelligence) – Middle East crude eased slightly Friday but held close to 26-month highs, while gasoline cracks firmed for a seventh successive session and distillates continue to struggle.
Dubai cash for August delivery was assessed at $73.45/b on June 25 (1630 Singapore time), down $0.25/b from Thursday’s Singapore close, while DME Oman futures for August settled $73.41/b at the Asia close, down $0.17/b.
Dubai was up around $2.50/b, or an increase of 3.5%.
Cash Brent (BFOE) for August was assessed at $75.73/b, down just $0.01/b from Thursday’s Asian close, pushing the Brent/Dubai spread back out to $2.28/b and the EFS to $4.10/b.
Meanwhile, light sweet Murban for August was trading on Abu Dhabi’s IFAD exchange at $74.23/b compared to $71.74/b last Friday, up 3.47% on the week.
Naphtha cracks were mixed, with the front month weakening marginally and the second month rising marginally. No deals were heard although solid demand is reported from the petrochemical sector.
Gasoline cracks continued to firm for the seventh successive session. RON 92 flat differentials were assessed higher on firmer bids and rising demand for higher grades, resulting in a flat price of $82.18/b FOB Singapore, up $0.08/b on the day and making a crack of $6.45/b -- the highest in a month. One deal was heard for RON 95 gasoline at $83.98/b. Strength can be seen reflected in the widening backwardation between July and August, which was at $0.45/b on Friday, up from $0.30/b last week.
Jet cracks continued to slide, hitting fresh two-month lows for the spot crack. Cash differentials were marked at $0.40/b under swaps resulting in a flat price of $77.91/b, down $0.10/b on the day, and a crack of $2.18/b, down $0.13/b. No deals were heard with demand said to be weak.
Like jet, gasoil cracks were weaker on the day and well down on the week. No deals were heard for 10ppm and the cash differential was marked at -$0.10/b. Cracks were marked at $4.82/b, down $0.18/b on the day and $0.80/b on the week. The flat price was pegged at $80.55/b, down $0.16/b on the day on lower swaps.
Fuel oil cracks edged marginally higher on Friday as crude broadly flatlined. Cash differentials remain in the negative but below $1/mt to the underlying swaps curve for both higher sulfur and marine fuel 0.5%. Cracks for the latter rose marginally to $1.7/b, but they remain down $0.40/b on the week despite less competition on bunkers from China. Flat prices were pegged at $534.25/mt FOB Singapore. Higher sulfur followed a similar pattern. 3.5% 380cst was pegged at $424.50/mt FOB Singapore, leaving the crack at -$9.86/b versus cash Brent. Stocks in Singapore were at a four-week low.