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Europe Gasoline/Naphtha-Crack rises, U.S. demand eyed

Mon, 25th Jun 2012 18:34


LONDON, June 25 (Reuters) - Gasoline refining margins

strengthened on Mon
day as outages in the United States helped

underpin prices, whilst naphtha cargoes gained some strength

from the gasoline complex as blending demand picked up.

Gasoline traders said cracks were supported by demand for

RBOB gasoline for the U.S. market given the prolonged outage at

the Motiva refinery in Port Arthur, Texas.

The onset of the hurricane season in the Gulf of Mexico was

also cited by traders after a tropical storm prompted the

closure of some oil and gas platforms as a precaution.

Early gasoline trades came at premiums to the July swap of

$35.50-$39.50 a tonne, with supply seen as tight at the front

end due to lower refinery runs.

Traders added that gasoline demand was still quite healthy,

which has helped widen the spread between gasoline and naphtha

to some $217.47 a tonne. As a result, naphtha has begun to

benefit from some gasoline blending and reforming demand.

'That's the only driver for naphtha at the moment,' a

naphtha trader said, acknowledging that demand from

petrochemical end-users in both Europe and Asia remained poor.

'As a consequence the market is pretty long but it becomes

more balanced as we go into the month. Heavy grades are very

much sought after at the moment for reforming purposes,' the

trader said.



GASOLINE

* No barges of benchmark Eurobob gasoline traded in the

window. Some 8,000 tonnes of Eurobob traded ahead of the window

at $908-$912 a tonne fob ARA, compared with $902-$914 a tonne

ahead of the window on Friday.

* Gunvor was the only seller whilst North Sea Group, Shell

and Cargill were on the buy side.

* Eurobob's crack to dated Brent was almost $1

stronger at around $19.53 a barrel, up from around $18.62 a

barrel on Friday.

* Two barges of premium unleaded gasoline traded in the

window at $914-$917 a tonne fob ARA. Gunvor sold both barges to

Total.

* At 1538 GMT, ICE Brent crude futures were down

$1.15 at $89.83 a barrel.

* U.S. RBOB gasoline futures in New York were up 1.07

percent at $2.5974 a gallon around the same time.

* RBOB's crack to U.S. crude futures was trading

at $25.36 a barrel, up from $24.32 a barrel around the same time

on Friday.



NAPHTHA

* Three naphtha cargoes traded in the window, at $692-$694 a

tonne cif NWE, up from Friday's trade at $687 a tonne cif NWE.

* One trader said that short-term physical tightness was

lending support. Another suggested that the buyers hadn't wanted

to miss out on a bargain as two of the deals were done at a

discount to the July swaps.

* Glencore sold a cargo to Statoil and Trafigura sold to

Morgan Stanley and Chevron.

* The July crack was seen trading at minus $12.70 a barrel,

with the August crack at minus $12.35 a barrel, a broker said.



(Reporting by Claire Milhench, editing by William Hardy)

((claire.milhench@thomsonreuters.com)(+44)(0)(207 542

3571)(Reuters Messaging:

claire.milhench.thomsonreuters.com@reuters.net))



(For latest physical prices double click on:, and. For energy speed guide page click on. For ARA oilstock data click on For European oilstock data click on For swaps prices double click on: gasoline naphtha HS fuel oil LS fuel oil )

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