LONDON,(Reuters) - Gasoline barge prices in
northwest Europe flatlined on Tuesday, in quiet trade, as
refining margins were pinned lower by firmer crude.
With crude prices largely driven by traders playing the
spread between Brent and U.S. crude CL-LCOc1, Olivier Jakob
said crude oil prices would have to fall to push margins up.
"Crude oil today is still mostly a Brent/WTI trade, but
margins are starting to be poor all over...Brent has to weaken
to recreate some margins both for Europe and the US Gulf (LLS),"
Trade was also quiet in the Mediterannean with a trader
saying that the market was waiting for refiners to get October
programmes next week.
However the trader said that demand from north Africa and
the Middle Eastern Gulf was making up for a lack of arbitrage to
the United States.
"The market is pretty balanced," the trader said.
* There were no trades of benchmark Eurobob in the window,
but some 4,000 tonnes traded ahead of the window, with barges
changing hands at between $1004-$1005 a tonne fob ARA, at the
top end of the $1,001-$1,005 a tonne range on Monday.
* BP and Chevron sold to Gunvor, which contintued its buying
spree from the previous session.
* At 1527 GMT, Eurobob's crack to dated Brent BFO- was
down at around $5.344 a barrel after it slid to an 11 week low
of $3.806 the previous session. However it was still well below
the levels of over $11 seen last week.
* The slight recovery in the crack was helped by a slight
slip in the price of Brent crude LCOc1. It was trading around
49 cents lower at $111.76 around the same time.
* Three barges of premium unleaded gasoline changed hands at
prices between $1018 a tonne fob ARA and $1034 a tonne. Statoil
and BP were sellers while Trafigura and Total bought.
* U.S. RBOB gasoline futures RBc1 in New York were down
0.3 percent at $2.7310 a gallon.
* RBOB's crack to U.S. crude futures RB-CL1=R weakened to
$25.58 a barrel, from $27.64 a barrel on Monday, and was at its
lowest since late June.
* "There were no bids or offers in the window, let alone
trades," a broker said.
* Naphtha swaps for September delivery were trading at
$943.22 a tonne CIF NWE.
* In the previous session, Stasco made a bid at $944 a tonne
cif NWE and Gunvor made an offer at $949 a tonne cif NWE.
* Naphtha refining margins were down at about minus $6.97, a
(Reporting by Simon Falush)