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Gulf Crude Weakens as Brent Falls Against WTI, Pipe Start Nears

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March 21 (Bloomberg) -- Light, sweet crude on the U.S. Gulf Coast weakened on the spot market by the most since Jan. 28 as Brent fell against West Texas Intermediate and operators prepared to load a pipeline to the Gulf.

The premium of Brent over WTI, the U.S. benchmark, shrank to $15.02 from $15.22, based on settlement prices. Gulf crudes compete for space in coastal U.S. refineries with foreign oils priced against Brent, the European benchmark.

Magellan Midstream Partners LP will begin filling the Longhorn pipeline this week, a company spokesman said last week. The reversed line will initially pump up to 75,000 barrels of crude a day to Houston from Crane, Texas.

Light Louisiana Sweet’s premium to WTI on the spot market in Cushing, Oklahoma, narrowed by $3 to $20 a barrel at 11:56 a.m. New York time, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.

Heavy Louisiana Sweet oil weakened $3.95 to a $20.30 premium. The 16 percent decline was the biggest since Aug. 27.

Mars Blend, a medium sour crude from the Gulf, weakened by $2.25 to $16.75 a barrel over WTI. Poseidon’s premium fell $2.75 to $16.50 a barrel.

Southern Green Canyon slid 75 cents to a premium of $14.75 a barrel and Thunder Horse weakened by $2.40 to $18.85 a barrel.

To contact the reporter on this story: Dan Murtaugh in Houston at dmurtaugh@bloomberg.net

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

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