Alaska North Slope crude strengthened by the most since February 2011 after refiners increased gross inputs in PADD 5, the U.S. West Coast, the oil’s main market, and field maintenance lowered production.
ANS, a medium, sour crude used by refiners on the U.S. West Coast, increased $1.50 to $5 a barrel over West Texas Intermediate at 1:52 p.m. New York time, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. Earlier this month, the oil sank to the lowest premium to WTI in more than 30 months.
ConocoPhillips said today maintenance continued at its Kuparuk field, and summer maintenance by BP Plc in Alaska was at its peak on Aug. 15, the company reported. In recent months some shippers have begun transporting less-expensive Bakken crude by rail from North Dakota to West Coast refineries.
Gulf Coast grades were mixed. Heavy Louisiana Sweet’s premium rose 45 cents to $2.75 a barrel at 1:52 p.m. Light Louisiana Sweet’s premium to WTI strengthened by 10 cents to $3.40. Poseidon’s discount narrowed 25 cents to $2.60 below WTI.
Mars Blend’s discount widened by 70 cents to $2.40 a barrel. The premium for Thunder Horse to WTI fell by 75 cents to $1.