Light Louisiana Sweet oil’s discount to European benchmark Brent fell to a 16-month low as more shale production made its way to the Gulf Coast while refinery maintenance reduced crude demand in the region.
LLS, the light, sweet benchmark on the Gulf Coast, weakened by $1.24 to a discount of $6.81 a barrel to Brent at 2:03 p.m., according to data compiled by Bloomberg. It’s the largest discount since May 24, 2012.
Refineries in Louisiana and Texas with a combined capacity of 2.3 million barrels a day are undergoing maintenance during October, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.
“It’s been underpinned by a huge amount of refinery maintenance and outages,” said Amrita Sen, chief oil analyst for Energy Aspects Ltd. in London. “That’s really been a problem for LLS.”
The Louisiana Offshore Oil Port, the largest waterborne petroleum import terminal in the U.S., received 140,000 barrels of Texas crude a day in July, according to data from the state’s Department of Natural Resources.
LOOP received its first tanker of domestic crude in August 2012 after making modifications to one of its three offshore buoys to allow receipts from smaller domestic vessels, such as those carrying Eagle Ford crude out of Texas.
The Port of Corpus Christi in Texas shipped out 367,535 barrels of crude a day in August, up 91 percent from that month in 2012, according to data on the port’s website.