MOSCOW: Urals differentials weakened in northwest Europe in Surgutneftegaz’s tender due to lower demand for Urals cargoes for loading at the end of January.
* Russia’s Surgutneftegaz awarded a spot tender to sell 480,000 tonnes of Urals crude oil for loading from Primorsk port on Jan. 21-22, 23-24 and 28-29 and one cargo of the same size from Ust-Luga on Jan. 25-26 and a cargo of 80,000 tonnes loading from Novorossiisk on Jan. 20-21.
* Glencore won two Urals cargoes, according to traders, one for loading from Primorsk on Jan. 21-22 and one for loading from Ust-Luga on Jan. 25-26, while BP was said to be the winner of a Urals cargo for loading from Primorsk on Jan. 28-29 and Total took a cargo for loading from the same port on Jan. 23-24.
* The cargoes with earlier loading dates were awarded at dated Brent plus $0.05-0.15 a barrel when adding freight to the original FOB-differential, while the cargoes with later loading dates were sold at discounts of around $0.05-0.10 a barrel to BFOE, traders said.
* On Thursday Surgutneftegaz awarded a spot tender to sell Urals cargoes for loading ex-Baltic ports in mid-January at a premium of 60 cents a barrel – the highest premium to dated Brent since 2013.
* It was not immediately clear who purchased Urals cargoes for loading from Novorossiisk on Jan. 20-21, but traders thought it could be Litasco. The price level was not available.
* Trading activity was quite low on Friday in a short quiet trading day on Friday ahead of New Year holidays.
* Russia will be off due to New Year and Orthodox Christmas celebrations from Dec. 31 until Jan. 9.
* There were no bids or offers for Urals, CPC Blend or Azeri BTC crude oil in the Platts window, which closed earlier due to a short business day on Friday, traders said.