Vitol Buys Forties at 11-Week High; Petraco Bids for Urals Crude

Vitol Group bought a cargo of North Sea Forties crude at the highest price in more than 11 weeks. Eni SpA and Petraco SpA failed to find a seller for Russian Urals grade.

PT Pertamina, Indonesia’s state-owned oil company, purchased 1.9 million barrels of West African crude for delivery in March, said a company official.

North Sea

Royal Dutch Shell Plc sold Forties Lot F0115 at a premium of 95 cents a barrel to Dated Brent for loading from Jan. 26 to Jan. 28, a Bloomberg survey of traders and brokers monitoring the Platts pricing window showed. That’s the highest since Oct. 12, when a lot traded at $1 more than the benchmark.

Shell bid at plus 95 cents to Dated Brent for a Jan. 21 to Jan. 23 cargo, while Chevron Corp was willing to pay 55 cents more than the benchmark for Jan. 24 to Jan. 29 with neither company finding a buyer, according to the survey.

Reported crude trading typically occurs during the Platts window, which ends at 4:30 p.m. London time. Forties loading in 10 to 25 days rose to 57 cents more than Dated Brent, data compiled by Bloomberg show. That compares with a 3 cent premium in the previous session and is the most since Dec. 21.

Brent for February settlement traded at $112.39 a barrel on the ICE Futures Europe exchange in London at the close of the window, compared with $109.55 in the previous session. The March contract was at $111.05 a discount of $1.34 to February.


Eni failed to find a buyer for Russian Urals loading Jan. 13 to Jan. 17 at $1 a barrel discount to Dated Brent on a delivered basis to Augusta, Italy, according to the Platts survey. That compares with a lot the company bought on Dec. 13 at minus 25 cents.

In northwest Europe, Petraco bid unsuccessfully for one consignment of the blend loading Jan. 23 to Jan. 27 at a $1.25 discount to Dated Brent, the survey showed. The grade traded at $1.30 less than the benchmark on Dec. 24.

The Urals differential to Dated Brent in the Mediterranean was at minus $1.07, 28 cents wider than on Dec. 31, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. In northwest Europe, the discount increased to $1.42 from $1.27 on Dec. 31, the data showed.

West Africa

Benchmark Nigerian Qua Iboe blend was at $2.44 a barrel more than Dated Brent, 4 cents less than on Dec. 31, data compiled by Bloomberg show.

Pertamina bought two 950,000 barrel cargoes of Qua Iboe crude, said the official, who asked not to be identified because he isn’t authorized to speak to the media.

This was the country’s second tender for March. It earlier bought 950,000 barrels each of Qua Iboe and Libya’s Amna grade, as well as 650,000 barrels of Azeri Light, the official said Dec. 21.

Indian Oil Corp., the nation’s largest refiner, issued a tender to buy crude for loading in March, according to a document obtained by Bloomberg News.

The tender closes at 3 p.m. local time on Jan. 8 and offers will be valid until 5 p.m. the next day, the document showed.

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