Mars Blend Weakens as Gulf Coast Refineries Reduce Crude Runs

Aug. 7 (Bloomberg) -- Mars Blend and other sour Gulf crudes weakened relative to West Texas Intermediate as U.S. Gulf Coast refineries reduced crude consumption to the lowest level in more than a month.

Crude runs in PADD 3 fell by 42,000 barrels to 8.34 million barrels a day in the week ended Aug. 2, the U.S. Energy Information Administration reported today. It was the lowest level since June 21.

Mars Blend, a medium-sour crude from the Gulf of Mexico, weakened by 30 cents to a premium of 25 cents a barrel compared with WTI in Cushing, Oklahoma, at 2:01 p.m. New York time.

Mars Blend is a combination of crudes from Royal Dutch Shell Plc’s Ursa, Mensa and Mars platforms, along with crude from the Amberjack pipeline. Shell delivered 289,562 barrels a day in March to Louisiana Offshore Oil Port LLC’s storage facility in Clovelly, Louisiana, according to its website.

Poseidon crude weakened by 40 cents to a discount of 10 cents a barrel to WTI. Crude from the Southern Green Canyon weakened by 40 cents to a 60-cents discount. Heavy Louisiana Sweet weakened by 10 cents to $4.90 a barrel more than WTI.

Light Louisiana Sweet, the light, sweet benchmark on the Gulf, strengthened by 5 cents to a $5.45-a-barrel premium to WTI. Thunder Horse, a medium, sweet crude, was unchanged at a $3-a-barrel premium.

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