ARA naphtha stocks hit a two-month high

Independent oil products stocks in the Amsterdam-Rotterdam-Antwerp (ARA) region increased by 1.0pc this week, reaching 5.247 mn t.

Naphtha stocks surged by 25pc to a two-month high, as unworkable eastward arbitrage and limited gasoline demand in the US meant there were no significant outflows. There was a steady supply of naphtha from Algeria, Portugal and the UK.

Gasoline inventories rose by just under 4pc on the week, with a drop in spot exports to transatlantic and west African destinations. Spot tanker bookings for west Africa-bound European gasoline with 2-8 December loadings fell by 9pc from the previous week, while bookings for transatlantic discharge for the same loading dates fell by 25pc in the same period.

Fuel oil inventories rose by 17.5pc, with a very large crude carrier (VLCC) scheduled to start loading later this week to Singapore. Fundamentals have remained broadly unchanged, with weak local demand in the ARA region and large volumes being shipped to Asia-Pacific.
Strong jet fuel imports from Kuwait contributed to a 5pc increase in stocks from the previous week.

Independent gasoil stocks fell by around 6pc from a week earlier, despite improved arbitrage economics for exporting diesel cargoes from the US and Mideast Gulf into the ARA region. A wider contango on Ice gasoil futures is increasing the incentive for traders to put product in storage tanks.

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