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COVID-19 - News digest as of 25.12.2020

December 25/2020

1. Asia distillates-jet fuel cash discounts narrow, refining margins gain

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Asia's cash differentials for jet fuel inched higher, while refining margins for the aviation fuel climbed for a second consecutive session, buoyed by a steady increase in the number of scheduled flights in the region, said Reuters. Cash discounts for jet fuel narrowed by 2 cents to 11 cents per barrel to Singapore quotes, the smallest discounts since Dec. 8. Refining margins, or cracks, for jet fuel rose 17 cents to $4.71 per barrel over Dubai crude during Asian trading hours on Thursday. The cracks have gained 48% in the last month. The jet fuel market has been gradually improving in recent weeks after the COVID-19 pandemic brought air travel to a virtual halt this year, and market watchers believe passenger traffic would be steadily on the rise as vaccine roll-outs spur more international flights in 2021.

2. Crude oil futures edge higher on bullish US stocks data, shrug off stimulus wrangling

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Crude oil futures edged higher during mid-morning trade in Asia Dec. 24 on positive crude stocks data from the US Energy Information Administration, and shrugging off uncertainty over the passing of a US stimulus package, reported S&P Global. At 10:42 am Singapore time (0242 GMT), the ICE Brent February contract was up 14 cents/b (0.27%) from the Dec. 23 settle at USD50.34/b, while the February NYMEX light sweet crude contract was up 11 cents/b (0.23%) at USD48.23/b. The markers had risen 2.24% and 2.34% respectively on Dec. 23. The uptrend continued into early trade in Asia Dec. 24, fueled by the release of EIA data showing that US crude inventories fell 570,000 barrels in the week ended Dec. 18 to 499.53 million barrels. Although this was short of analyst expectations of around a 4.7 million-barrel draw, it was more bullish than the American Petroleum Institute's Dec. 22 estimate of a 2.7 million-barrel build in the week.

3. Demand for PVC is strong in USA in December

MOSCOW (MRC) -- The latest US housing starts data illustrates continued strong demand for polyvinyl chlorie (PVC) in the country, which has bucked the typical seasonal lull seen in colder winter months, reported S&P Global. November housing starts rose 1.2% to 1.547 million units from October levels, and were 12.8% higher than 1.371 million units in November 2019, according to the data released Dec. 17. Market sources said a continued push for new dwellings amid the coronavirus pandemic has fueled PVC demand, particularly for single-family housing with separate ventilation systems and more space for consumers working from home.
Author:Margaret Volkova
Tags:Asia, PVC, crude and gaz condensate, SPVC, petrochemistry, COVID-19, USA.
Category:General News
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