SINGAPORE- Asia's 0.5% very low-sulphur fuel oil (VLSFO) front-month crack extended losses on Tuesday, falling for a fourth straight session, as crude oil prices rose.
The front-month VLSFO crack slipped to a near two-month low of $11.27 a barrel above Dubai crude, down from $12.10 at the start of the previous week, Refinitiv data on eikon showed.
This came as benchmark oil prices extended gains on Tuesday during Asian trading hours as investors bet tight supply and rising vaccination rates will help offset any impact on demand from surging COVID-19 cases worldwide.
Front-month Brent crude futures has rallied to about $75 a barrel on Tuesday from around $68 at the start of last week. LCOc1
Despite the lower crack values, the near term VLSFO market's supply outlook remains somewhere between tight to balanced, trade sources said.
Three high-sulphur fuel oil (HSFO) cargo trades were reported in the Singapore window totalling 60,000 tonnes.
The HSFO trades included 40,000 tonnes of 180-cst HSFO and 20,000 tonnes of 380-cst HSFO.
No VLSFO cargo trades were reported.
Hengli Petrochemical Co. Ltd, one of China's largest independent refiners and petrochemicals producers, denied on Tuesday a state-run media outlet's report that it had evaded paying tax of about $2 billion by under-reporting output of refined products.
"The report does not reflect the reality of Hengli's production and operations and the questions that it raised over the company's tax practices are unfounded," a company spokesman told Reuters.
The article published on Monday by China Energy News in its weekly e-newspaper could no longer be found on its website or on its official Wechat account. The story had been based on unnamed industry and consultancy sources.
(Reporting by Roslan Khasawneh; Editing by Amy Caren Daniel) ((firstname.lastname@example.org; Reuters Messaging: email@example.com))