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Syncrude Premium Falls to Lowest Since Feburary on Higher Output

Syncrude weakened to the smallest premium to U.S. benchmark West Texas Intermediate since February on speculation production will increase.

Suncor Energy Inc. boosted its 2011 oil sands production forecast to 300,000 to 310,000 barrels a day from a July estimate of 280,000 to 310,000 barrels day, according to a statement on the company’s website today.

The Calgary-based company said six weeks of maintenance at the Syncrude Canada Ltd. oil-sands upgrader in Alberta would be completed this week. Canadian Oil Sands Ltd., another shareholder in the joint venture project, said Oct. 27 stored bitumen will be processed in December to “support achievement of the 110 million-barrel production outlook.”

Syncrude’s premium to WTI weakened $1.25 to $5.75 a barrel at 2:14 p.m. in New York, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. That’s the smallest since Feb. 10.

The discount for Western Canada Select widened 45 cents to $11.40 a barrel.

In the U.S. Gulf Coast, Heavy Louisiana Sweet’s premium weakened 10 cents to $17.30 a barrel while Light Louisiana Sweet decreased 20 cents to $17.55 above WTI, the smallest gap since July.

The premium for Mars Blend dropped 5 cents to $13.60 a barrel. Poseidon sank 60 cents to $12.60 a barrel over WTI.

Southern Green Canyon’s premium increased 30 cents to $12.55 a barrel and West Texas Sour’s discount was unchanged at 65 cents below WTI. Thunder Horse slipped 20 cents to $15 over the benchmark.

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