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U.S. Gulf Crudes Gain on Signs Refinery Demand Will Rise

Dec. 6 (Bloomberg) -- U.S. Gulf crudes strengthened against benchmark West Texas Intermediate as refinery work is completed in Louisiana and Mexico, which could spur more demand for crudes in the region.

ConocoPhillips is restarting the alkylation unit and returning the catalytic cracker to full rates at its Alliance refinery in Belle Chasse, Louisiana.

Last week, Petroleos Mexicanos, the state-owned oil company, said maintenance at its Salina Cruz refinery in the southern state of Oaxaca was concluding. The plant, the second largest in Mexico, is returning a catalytic cracker and a hydrodesulfurization unit to full service.

Poseidon’s discount to WTI narrowed 25 cents to $1 a barrel, according to data compiled by Bloomberg at 4:36 p.m. New York time. The grade added 44 cents to $88.38 a barrel.

Mars Blend’s discount tightened 5 cents to 35 cents versus WTI, while the grade rose 24 cents to $89.03.

Thunder Horse’s premium was unchanged at $2.30 a barrel while the grade gained 19 cents to $91.68 a barrel. Southern Green Canyon’s discount narrowed 10 cents to $1.40, while the grade added 29 cents to $87.98 a barrel.

Light Louisiana Sweet’s premium weakened 5 cents to $4.80 a barrel, as the grade rose 14 cents to $94.18. Heavy Louisiana Sweet’s premium rose 20 cents to $4, as the grade climbed 39 cents to $93.38 a barrel.

West Texas Sour’s discount narrowed 15 cents to $2.60 a barrel. The grade gained 34 cents to $86.78.

To contact the reporter on this story: Samantha Zee in San Francisco at szee@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Dan Stets at dstets@bloomberg.net

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