U.S. Base Oil Price Report


Motiva, Phillips 66 and SK joined a group of producers that have already implemented increases for paraffinic base oils, while on the naphthenic side, Cross Oil and San Joaquin also announced price hikes.

Motiva will raise its API Group II STAR 4 (110 viscosity) and STAR 6 (220 vis) base oils 15 cents per gallon, and its STAR 12 (600 vis) grade 10 cents/gal, with an effective date of January 11.

Phillips 66 will be lifting its Group II Pure Performance 70N, 80N and 110N base oils by 10 cents/gal, and its PP225N cut by 5 cents/gal, but will leave the posted price of its PP600N grade unchanged.

Phillips 66s Group II+/III base oil postings will be increased 20 cents/gal. All of the producers price adjustments will be implemented on Jan. 11.

SK will raise prices on its Group II/III grades 15 cents per gallon, effective Jan. 18. SK prices will be revised on the price table below next week when the increases go into effect.

Previously, Flint Hills Resources, ExxonMobil, HollyFrontier, Paulsboro, Calumet and Kleen Performance Products had implemented price hikes in their respective base oil segments.

On the naphthenic front, Cross Oil and San Joaquin Refining also communicated increases of 20 cents/gal across the board on the heels of similar adjustments by Ergon and Calumet the previous week.

Cross cited market conditions as the reason for the hikes, which had an implementation date of Jan. 6.

San Joaquin will be lifting the price on all of its naphthenic oils on Jan. 13.

The recent rise in crude oil and feedstock costs were said to behind the round of increases. Despite small fluctuations within a fairly narrow range, prices have remained well above $50 per barrel, increasing over 20 percent since last November.

However, on Tuesday, oil futures dropped the most in more than five weeks on concerns that Iraq might not comply with OPEC production cuts.

While Gulf oil producers Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Qatar, Oman and Kuwait appear to be implementing the agreed cuts, Iraqs oil exports reached a record high in December, according to reports.

West Texas Intermediate futures on the CME/Nymex settled at $50.82 per barrel on Jan. 10, down $1.51 per bbl from the Jan. 3 settlement of $52.33 per bbl.

Light Louisiana Sweet wholesale spot prices closed at $53.53 per barrel on Jan. 9, from $55.10 on Dec. 30 (the last trading day of 2016), according to data from the U.S. Energy Information Administration.

Brent was trading at $53.64 per bbl on the CME on Jan. 10, down $1.83 per bbl from $55.47 per bbl on Jan. 3.

Aside from firmer crude oil and feedstock values, participants commented that some of the base stock hikes had been driven by tightening conditions of a number of grades ahead of the upcoming turnaround at the Excel Paralubes plant in Westlake, Louisiana, in March.

The Excel Paralubes plant can produce 22,200 barrels per day of Group II base oils and production is jointly marketed by Phillips 66 and Flint Hills Resources. The suppliers were heard to be building inventories to cover contractual obligations during the maintenance shutdown.

Demand has also started to pick up following the holidays, with buyers returning to the market to replenish inventories, as most had ended the year with limited stocks, sources said.

Historic U.S. posted base oil prices and WTI and Brent crude spot prices are available for purchase in Excel format.

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