WTI in Midland Strengthens as Pipelines Move More Crude

West Texas Intermediate crude in Midland, Texas, strengthened for the third day in a row against the same oil in Cushing, Oklahoma, as key pipelines increased rates after maintenance.

WTI in Midland and West Texas Sour both strengthened this week as Magellan Midstream Partners LP’s Longhorn and Sunoco Logistics Partners LP’s Mid Valley pipelines moved more crude. The Midland price has advanced $5.50 against WTI in Cushing in three days and West Texas Sour has gained $5.

“You had a lot of stranded barrels,” said Andrew Lebow, a senior vice president at Jefferies Bache LLC in New York. “They may be somewhat stranded still in November, but I think December, January, these differentials will return to more normal values. For West Texas Sour, forever, it was trading 25 to 30 (cents) under and it didn’t really move.”

WTI in Midland strengthened by $1.75 a barrel to a discount of $1.25 relative against WTI in Cushing at 2:07 p.m. East Coast time, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.

WTS, a low-density, high-sulfur crude from the Permian Basin, also priced in Midland, gained 75 cents to a discount of $3 a barrel.

Sunoco increased flows on its Mid Valley Pipeline system to about 150,000 barrels a day on Oct. 18 after essentially shutting it for more than two days, according to Genscape Inc., a Louisville, Kentucky-based energy information provider. The pipeline carries crude to Samaria, Michigan, from Longview, Texas.

Magellan ramped up rates to the full 225,000 barrels a day on its Longhorn Pipeline to Houston from West Texas, Amrita Sen, chief oil analyst for Energy Aspects Ltd. in London, said by phone yesterday, citing a trade report.

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