August 13, 2018 / 4:41 PM / 8 months ago

W. Africa Crude-Surplus pushes diffs to six-week lows

LONDON, Aug 13 (Reuters) - Differentials for Nigerian crude neared their lowest in six weeks for some major grades, as an abundance of unsold cargoes around the Atlantic Basin weighed on prices, traders said.

* For the past week, North Sea prices in particular have slid as major traders struggle to sell crude from floating storage.

* Around 40 cargoes of Nigerian crude for loading in August and September are still up for sale, which is around two-thirds of the originally planned amount for the two months, traders said.

* Forcados was offered at $1.30 a barrel above dated Brent, down from an offer from Shell at $1.35 late last week, while Bonny Light was said to be holding at $1.35 a barrel. Both grades were closer to $1.50 just two weeks ago.

* About half a dozen cargoes of Angolan crude are still up for sale from the 47-strong September loading programme. Some sellers are offering cargoes on a delivered basis in Shandong, which can be a sign that holders of physical barrels are having more difficulty in placing their oil.

* Indonesian refiner Pertamina is seeking to purchase three 950,000-barrel cargoes and one 600,000-barrel cargo of light, sweet crude for delivery between November and December. It was not clear yet who had won the tender, traders said.

RELATED NEWS

* OPEC on Monday forecast lower demand for its crude next year as rivals pump more and said top oil exporter Saudi Arabia, eager to avoid a return of oversupply, had cut production.

* The head of Royal Dutch Shell’s global refining operations Lori Ryerkerk will step down at the end of the month after five years in a job where she oversaw a vast overhaul of the business, according to an internal memo seen by Reuters.

* Taiwan’s Mega International Commercial Bank plans to terminate its payment clearing mechanism between Taiwan and Iran after November in response to the United States’ sanctions on Iran, three people familiar with the matter said on Monday. (Reporting by Amanda Cooper; Editing by Adrian Croft) ))

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