LONDON, March 29 (Reuters) – Gasoline stocks in independent storage in the Amsterdam-Rotterdam-Antwerp refining and storage hub hit a record since tracking began, data from Dutch consultancy PJK International showed on Thursday.
The nearly 8 percent increase from the previous week pushed total gasoline stocks to 1.387 million tonnes, the highest since PJK began compiling storage figures in 1995.
“It’s really busy in the gasoline market,” said PJK’s Lars van Wageningen. “We have heard about floating storage — people are just waiting” for the right time to sell. He noted that the large pricing gap between summer and winter quality had also prompted some of the storage plays, as sellers awaited stronger demand during the summer months.
The rise came as demand for gasoline softened globally, and as the northern hemisphere moved from winter to summer, prompting a change in the fuel quality needed.
This shift contributed to an excess that had already led traders in Europe and Asia to store gasoline on tankers off the coast as they struggle to contain a steady rise in supplies.
Still, some winter-grade quality fuel was sailing for Latin America and Australia, he said, which are entering the winter season.
Stocks of all other fuels bar distillates also rose in the week to Thursday. Distillate stocks fell by 8.8 percent as seasonal maintenance turnarounds in Germany curtailed local supply and led buyers to seek cargoes from the ARA hub, van Wageningen said.