SINGAPORE: Asia’s gasoline and naphtha cracks both edged lower on Monday, reversing an upward trend seen throughout last week.
While sentiment in the gasoline market has been buoyed by signs of improved demand in key markets and shrinking supplies, but traders remain concerned higher exports from India in the coming months would weigh on the market amid soaring infections in the country.
Indian state refiners’ local fuel sales in April declined due to state-level restrictions aimed at stemming a rampant second wave of coronavirus infections, preliminary data showed.
India’s gasoline sales were down 13.5 percent in April from the previous month and 4.1 percent lower from April 2019.
Analysts are expecting India’s demand for transportation fuels to witness a sharper slump in May due to more impending restrictions.
The gasoline crack in Singapore slipped to $6.51 per barrel on Monday, compared with $6.58 per barrel on Friday.
Asia’s naphtha crack slipped to $93.90 per tonne, down 95 cents from a more than three-week high hit in the previous session.
While trade in naphtha cargoes for the second-half of June should begin to emerge, demand could be limited as buyers opt for cheaper LPG feedstock alternatives, trade sources said.
OPEC oil output has risen in April as higher supply from Iran countered involuntary cuts and agreed reductions by other members under a pact with allies, a Reuters survey found, adding to signs of a 2021 recovery in Tehran’s exports.
The 13-member Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries pumped 25.17 million barrels per day (bpd) in April, the survey found, up 100,000 bpd from March. Output has risen every month since June 2020 with the exception of February.