Naphtha margins in Asia at 20 day highs

01-Oct-12
The Asian naphtha price was near a two-week high of $978.50 a tonne on Friday, while margins were at a 2-1/2 week high of $134.08 a tonne on tighter supplies. Reuters Strong gasoline demand in the United States prevented more Western naphtha, which can be reformed into gasoline, from anchoring at Asian shores next month. "It's all about gasoline, which can drag the naphtha up or down. Gasoline supplies are very shallow now," said a Singapore-based trader. Some traders said the lower naphtha supplies for Octoberfrom India and Europe, estimated at a total of 1.2 milliontonnes versus September's total at about 1.33 million tonnes mayhave also lifted prices. The strong fundamentals are likely to work in favour ofKuwait Petroleum Corp (KPC), which will be holding talks inLondon next week to discuss premiums for naphtha cargoes liftingfrom December 2012 to November 2013. "KPC usually gives the numbers after meeting its customers,but I think we can expect levels to be in high $20s a tonne,"said another trader. Other traders were expecting KPC to quote initial offers at,or above $30 a tonne to Middle East quotes on a free-on-board(FOB) basis. In South Korea, Honam Petrochemical has bought 25,000 tonnesof naphtha for first-half November rrival at Yeosu, but thepremiums could not be confirmed. But some traders had estimated that the premium level to bearound $10.50 a tonne to Japan quotes on a cost-and-freight(C&F) basis.
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