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Refining margin for VLSFO logs weekly decline

Saturday, 27 May 2023 | 00:00

Asia’s refining margin for very-low sulphur fuel oil (VLSFO) posted a weekly decline on Friday, as expectations of steady to more supplies in June weighed on the market.

The front-month crack for the 0.5% VLSFO product closed at a premium of $9.97 a barrel at 0830 GMT, sliding by nearly 5% from the previous week.

Meanwhile, its cash premium eased again after steadying in the last session, dropping to $7.13 a tonne over Singapore quotes on Friday.

The spot high-sulphur fuel oil (HSFO) market was relatively unchanged for the week, with the 380-cst HSFO premium holding in a tight range and closing at $4.35 a tonne on Friday, though refining margins eased.

Front-month crack for 380-cst HSFO slipped to a discount of $9.71 a barrel, logging a decline of more than 30% from the previous week.

Firm demand from China had propped up Asia’s HSFO margins in the previous weeks, but this strength has eased as buying had cooled off slightly, trade sources said.


Fuel oil inventories in the Amsterdam-Rotterdam-Antwerp (ARA) refining and storage hub was stable at 1.36 million tonnes in the week to May 25, latest data from Dutch consultancy Insights Global showed.


Oil prices were stable on Friday, as the market weighed conflicting messages on supply from Russia and Saudi Arabia ahead of the next OPEC+ policy meeting, a stronger U.S. dollar and worries of weaker-than-expected demand growth.

Lloyd’s Register has told India’s Gatik Ship Management, which has become a major carrier of Russian oil since the Ukraine war, that it will withdraw certification of 21 of its vessels by June 3, the maritime services company told Reuters.

Malaysia’s Anti-Corruption Commission on Friday said it is investigating allegations of corruption involving state oil firm Petronas and an international oil and gas company.

Global freight volumes show signs of having bottomed out in the first quarter, signalling the industrial cycle may be near its trough, which could provide some support to oil prices later in 2023.
Source: Reuters

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