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Asia's naphtha intermonth timespread hit a fresh five-year high, while gasoline profit margin touched a 13-month high of $10.75 a barrel, supported by supply tightness caused by demand and refinery maintenance.

Naphtha price for second-half November was $19 a tonne higher than the following month versus $18 in the previous session.

This is the highest intermonth price gap since May 23 2014, Reuters data showed, and the value is almost six times higher versus an average of $3.3 for the first eight months of this year.

China's CNOOC was looking to buy up to 80,000 tonnes of naphtha for second-half November arrival at Huizhou.

The tender results were not immediately clear but industry sources expect CNOOC to pay premiums in the low to mid $20s a tonne level to Japan quotes on a cost-and-freight (C&F) basis although this could not be directly confirmed.

Gasoline stocks held in the Amsterdam-Rotterdam-Antwerp (ARA) refining and storage hub fell by 7% in the week to Thursday to reach a four-month low of 914,000 tonnes, data from Dutch consultancy Insights Global showed.

The data showed that cargoes have sailed to the Middle East for the third straight week. The fall in inventories mirrored the trend in the United States, where its gasoline stocks had fallen last week.

Copyright Reuters, 2019


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