Petroliam Nasional Bhd., Malaysia’s state oil company, raised the price-adjustment factor for its flagship Tapis crude to the highest in seven months as the profit from making diesel increased.
Petronas, as the Kuala Lumpur-based company is known, set the so-called alpha at $6.10 a barrel for February shipments, according to an official who asked not to be identified because of internal rules. It was $5.70 for January and averaged $6.65 in 2012.
Refiners’ profit from producing gasoil, or diesel, has climbed, boosting demand for low-sulfur, or “sweet” crudes such as those produced in Malaysia. Gasoil’s premium to Asian marker Dubai crude was at $21.67 a barrel today, according to Bloomberg fair value curves. The so-called crack spread has widened 13 percent so far this month. It gained 8.9 percent in January, the most in half a year.
Petronas includes the Tapis adjustment factor in its monthly calculations of official selling prices. The formula is tied to Brent produced in the North Sea, a benchmark grade for Europe, the Mediterranean and Africa.