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UK Money News

North Sea Crude-Ekofisk edges higher, but competition with Forties heats up

Thu, 29th Sep 2016 17:27

LONDON, Sept 29 (Reuters) - * North Sea Ekofisk crude oil differentials edged up on Thursday, rising for the first time in three days, while Forties differentials were bid at their highest in nearly a week, ahead of the release of next week's November loading programmes.

* Vitol sold a cargo of Ekofisk to Shell after cutting the offer price, bringing diffs for this grade back into positive territory after Wednesday's drop to three-month lows.

* This month, supply of Forties has fallen because of maintenance at the Buzzard oilfield, a major contributor to the stream that tends to make Forties more sour.

* Ekofisk is generally more expensive than Forties, but with the latter coming in less sour this month, stiff competition has forced this premium to its smallest since the start of the year.

* Ekofisk fell to a discount of about 20 cents a barrel to Forties on Wednesday, compared with an average premium of around 70 cents so far in 2016, according to Reuters data.

* Production from 12 major North Sea crude streams will average 1.84 million barrels per day (bpd) next month, up from September's two-year low of 1.796 million bpd, according to Reuters calculations based on loading programmes provided by trade sources.


* Vitol sold Shell a cargo of Ekofisk for loading Oct. 16-18 at a premium of 5 cents to dated Brent.

* Shell bid for a cargo of Ekofisk for loading Oct. 24-29 at a premium of 10 cents to dated Brent.

* Vitol withdrew an offer for a cargo of Ekofisk for loading Oct. 16-18 at 15 cents.

* Statoil offered a cargo of Oseberg for loading Oct. 21-23 at 50 cents above the dated Brent price.

* Petroineos bid for a cargo of Forties for loading Oct. 9-14 at 25 cents above the dated price. (Reporting by Amanda Cooper; Editing by Susan Thomas)

(c) Copyright Thomson Reuters 2016. Click For Restrictions - http://about.reuters.com/fulllegal.asp

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