Asia Naphtha/Gasoline-Naphtha markets fall as imports rise
Asia’s naphtha market fell further on Thursday after imports rose at the commercial hub of Singapore despite no supplies from Russia so far this month.
The crack fell by about $1 to $5.63 per metric ton over Brent crude and the second-half naphtha price plunged by $9.50 to $654.75 per ton.
Traders said persisting tepid petrochemical demand amid ample supplies remained a key factor for the weakness of margins in Asia, and the trend will likely continue for the next couple of weeks. Waning gasoline blending demand also weighed on market sentiment, they added.
The gasoline crack, on the other hand, rose to $5.25 per barrel over Brent crude on Thursday from $4.10 a day earlier amid a decline in stockpiles in Singapore.
Imports of naphtha into Singapore rose to about 190,891 tons in week to Oct. 11 from about 85,898 tons in the prior week, boosted by a surge in imports from South Korea, government data showed.
Total light distillate inventories at the Asian trading hub fell to a three-month low of 12.258 million barrels in the week to Wednesday, the data showed.
– Oil prices rose about 1% on Thursday, reversing earlier falls, on expectations that U.S. interest rates had peaked, but a lower demand growth forecast for next year from the International Energy Agency and higher U.S. inventories limited further gains.
– European Union energy commissioner Kadri Simson said on Thursday she discussed cooperation to reduce energy market volatility during talks in Beijing this week.
Source: Reuters (Reporting by Mohi Narayan; Editing by Eileen Soreng)