March 12, 2018 / 4:55 PM / 9 days ago

W. Africa Crude-Trading stalls, Nigerian diffs under downward pressure

LONDON, March 12 (Reuters) - Trading was stifled by the pending IOC tender and the May loading programmes, which are expected later this week.


* Differentials for nearly all of Nigeria’s April-loading cargoes were under downward pressure due to an excess, traders said.

* One company offered Forcados at a $2.15 a barrel premium to dated Brent, compared with the last offer at $2.50 a barrel premiums. Still, sources said it remained too expensive.

* Several Forcados cargoes were left available, traders said, in addition to nearly every other grade.

* Traders said Qua Iboe had traded pretty well, but there were still three to four cargoes left and that prices had dipped to around $1.50 a barrel above Brent.

* Pending tenders from Asia that could absorb April-loading cargoes had mostly been awarded, meaning those remaining would need to find outlets in Europe and the United States.

* Refinery maintenance in both regions, which will peak in Europe in May, had cut into demand. Weak gasoline cracks were also weighing on demand for light sweet crudes.

* The May programme export plan is due this week.


* Fewer than 10 April-loading cargoes had yet to trade, sources said, as demand for medium, distillate-rich grades was faring better.

* Angola’s state oil company Sonangol was still offering its late-month Dalia at dated Brent minus 70 cents a barrel.

* Angola’s May export programme was also due this week.


* A tender from India’s IOC to buy oil for loading May 5-10 closes later this week, with results expected on Thursday.

* The results of a tender from Indonesia’s Pertamina were not immediately clear. The company was looking for 600,000-barrel cargoes for May 2-3 and May 15-16 delivery.

Reporting by Libby George Editing by David Evans

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