17th January 2022 15:03 GMT

Fuel oil flat prices in Europe have strengthened of late amid a rally in the broader crude oil complex.

FOB Rotterdam 0.5%S marine fuel barges were assessed at $624.75/mt on Jan. 14, up $58.25/mt week on week.

Marine fuel 0.5%S

The premium for delivered 0.5%S marine fuel over barges at Rotterdam fell $4.25/mt week on week to $6.25/mt.

Stocks of fuel oil in the Amsterdam-Rotterdam-Antwerp region fell 11% to 1.033 million mt in the week to Jan. 12, Insights Global data showed, which was lower than at any point in 2021.

Fuel oil stocks in the region represented 20.1% of total refined oil products stocks in the region, which is lower than last week's percentage share at 22.6%. Insights Global does not differentiate per fuel type.

Prompt demand for European very low sulfur fuel oil -- used as a marine fuel -- hit its highest point in two years, as measured by the backwardation of the paper market.

In downstream bunker markets, demand was quiet on the week. While there was some tightness on 0.5%S in Malta and Las Palmas, availability in Europe was reported as good. Prices for 0.5%S in Rotterdam reached their highest at $631/mt since Platts assessment was first launched in July 2019.

High sulfur fuel oil

FOB Rotterdam 3.5% fuel oil barges finished the week at $460.75/mt on Jan. 14, up $18.75/mt from the previous week.

Exports of fuel oil from the Russian Black Sea port of Tuapse have been set 420,000 mt in January, up from 330,000 mt in December, according to a copy of the loading schedule seen by S&P Global Platts.

Demand for HSFO in bunker markets continued to be quiet. Tightness was reported in Gibraltar and Las Palmas, with availability good at all other ports.

The differential between 0.5%S and 3.5%S fuel oil -- the Hi-5 bunkers spread -- widened $44/mt on the week to $165/mt at Rotterdam. The Capesize scrubber premium rose $477/day to $5,881/day during the same period.


Feedstock demand for January loadings have been met and covered by ample supply from the back sea, with European vacuum gasoil loadings rising by 90kt week on week. Strong crack spreads in end-product markets such as gasoline and diesel could see strengthening margins in secondary processing units such as fluid catalytic crackers and hydrocrackers, reviving some feedstock demand for February delivery.

The FCC outage at the Miro refinery is in focus as a technical glitch on Jan. 7 halted production and demand for straight run feedstocks. The market will be keenly watching the outage with normal production expected to resume towards the end of January.

Bunkerworld .,
17th January 2022 15:03 GMT