LONDON, Oct 15 (Reuters) - Gasoline refining margins in
northwest Europe rose on Tuesday as a shutdown ahead of a strike
at Scotland's 210,000 barrel per day Grangemouth refinery
squeezed supplies, but gains were limited by weak demand and
meagre export opportunities.
'They have already shut in their fluid catalytic cracker...
so gasoline production is very low, say 15,000 barrels per day,
maybe 20,000 at best. Normally, 22 percent of their production
is gasoline,' said one trader.
'So this will help the gasoline market but discretionary
arbitrage into the U.S. is closed, which is normal for this time
of year, so don't expect massive gasoline support, just some.'
The Grangemouth refinery is already being shut down ahead of
a strike due to begin on Oct 20 and traders said it was an
important supplier of gasoline to Scotland and elsewhere in the
The 45,000 bpd fluid catalytic cracker was shut on Tuesday
morning, according to data from Genscape, potentially limiting
The 65,000 bpd and 35,000 bpd crude distillation units and
the 39,600 bpd catalytic reformer had already been shut since
early September for maintenance, it said.
European refining margins have been hammered in recent weeks
hit by a combination of weak European demand and competition
from overseas refiners who benefit from lower crude oil prices,
modern technologies and economies of scale.
French oil company Total, Europe's biggest
refiner, said margins in the region had dropped to a near
four-year low of $10.6 per tonne in the third
Export shipments out of Europe also were few, with around
six new tankers fixed in recent days to West Africa, the Red
Sea, the U.S. East Coast and Asia, according to shipping data.
* No barges of benchmark Eurobob gasoline traded in the
Platts price assessment window. There was one offer at $954 a
tonne fob ARA. On Monday, Chevron sold to Gunvor at $943.50 a
* Two barges of premium unleaded traded at $956-$957 a tonne
fob ARA, up from $947-$949 a tonne on Monday.
* Some 2,000 tonnes traded on the Argus platform at $954 a
tonne fob ARA, compared to $943-$953 a tonne on Monday. Statoil
sold to Morgan Stanley.
* The November swap was trading at around $943.25 a tonne
fob ARA, up from $934 a tonne on Monday.
* Eurobob's crack to dated Brent was at around $2.884
a barrel, up from $1.365 a barrel on Monday.
* Brent crude oil futures were down $0.63 at $110.41
a barrel by 1519 GMT.
* U.S. RBOB gasoline futures in New York were down
0.13 percent at $2.6703 a gallon, and the crack was
at $10.20 a barrel.
* No naphtha cargoes traded for a second straight day on
* The October crack swap was trading at about minus $7 a
barrel on Tuesday. The November and December crack swaps were
trading at around minus $6.75 a barrel.
(Reporting by Lin Noueihed; editing by Keiron Henderson)
Keywords: MARKETS EUROPE/GASOLINE
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