Total Fails to Buy Forties; Angola Crude Exports at 3-Year High

Total SA failed to buy North Sea Forties crude even as it bid at a higher level than yesterday’s trade. BP Plc and OAO Lukoil’s Litasco unit offered Russian Urals grade without finding a buyer.

Angola, Africa’s second-largest oil producer, will raise exports in May to the highest in more than three years, after one more cargo than in the preliminary plan, according to a final loading program obtained by Bloomberg News.

North Sea

Total bid for Forties loading from April 16 to April 22 at 65 cents a barrel less than Dated Brent, according to a Bloomberg survey of traders and brokers monitoring the Platts pricing window. That compares with a trade yesterday at minus 75 cents to the benchmark.

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 widened by 15 cents to a discount of 77 cents a barrel to Dated Brent, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. That’s the lowest since April 19.

Brent for May settlement traded at $108.21 a barrel on the ICE Futures Europe exchange in London at the close of the window, compared with $107.71 in the previous session. The June contract was at $107.94, a discount of 27 cents to May.

The share of Buzzard in Forties rose to 44 percent for the week ending March 24, up from 40 percent a week earlier, BP Plc said on its website. That the highest proportion since Feb. 10.


BP failed to sell Urals at $2.15 a barrel less than Dated Brent on a delivered basis to Rotterdam, the Platts survey showed. That’s the same level as the company offered yesterday. Litasco offered the grade at a $2.10 discount without finding a buyer, according to the survey.

The Urals discount to Dated Brent in the Mediterranean widened by 4 cents to $1.03 a barrel, data compiled by Bloomberg show. In northwest Europe, the discount was at $2.04 a barrel, compared with minus $1.89 in the previous session. That’s the widest since March 12.

Russia plans to ship 1.95 million barrels a day of Urals from two export terminals on the Baltic Sea in April, a 20 percent increase from March, a final loading program showed.

Primorsk will export 57 cargoes and Ust-Luga plans to ship 23 lots, according to the schedule obtained by Bloomberg News, unchanged from the preliminary program. Consignments from the ports are of 100,000 metric tons each.

OAO Surgutneftegas sold five cargoes of Urals loading from Primorsk and Ust-Luga in April to BP, Royal Dutch Shell Plc, Total SA and Repsol SA, according to two people with knowledge of the matter, who asked not to be identified as the information is confidential.

West Africa

Benchmark Nigerian Qua Iboe blend fell by 2 cents to $3.17 a barrel more than Dated Brent, Bloomberg data show. That’s the lowest since Feb. 28.

Angola will ship 60 cargoes compared with 55 in April. Exports will increase to 57.69 million barrels, or 1.86 million barrels a day, the plan shows. That compares with 52.9 million barrels, or 1.76 million barrels a day, in April, according to a separate schedule. The country loaded 1.91 million barrels in October 2009.

Nigeria, Africa’s largest oil producer, will boost crude exports to 73 cargoes in May, a partial loading program obtained by Bloomberg News that includes 17 of 18 grades showed.

Eni SpA stopped oil operations in Bayelsa state swamp area because crude theft and sabotage reached “unsustainable” peaks of 60 percent of its output, the company said today in an e-mailed statement. The closure will reduce crude supplies to the Brass River Export terminal, it said.

The company’s “equity production” in Nigeria was 154,000 barrels a day in 2012, of which about 40,000 was from the swamp area.