Alaska North Slope Crude Price Falls to Lowest Since April 2020

(Reuters) — Prices for Alaska North Slope (ANS) crude fell on Tuesday to the lowest since September 2020, as refineries in California bought more crude locally and the spread between low sulfur and higher sulfur crudes widened.

ANS, a medium sour crude, for February delivery traded at a discount of $2 to Brent crude oil LCOc1 on Tuesday.

An outage at the Plains All American's Line 2000 pipeline had PBF Energy and Valero Energy's west coast refineries buying California crude, a trader said. Expected maintenance in January at some refiners also dented demand, the trader added.

Spokespeople for PBF and Valero were not immediately available to comment.

Weaker ANS prices are consistent with the overall widening of the spread between heavy and light crude grades, said John Auers, a refining analyst with RBN Energy said.

"As heavy/light spreads widen, medium sour crudes such as ANS and Oriente also widen their discounts vs. light sweet crudes such as Brent," Auers added.

Plains All American earlier this year suspended operations on its Line 2000 pipeline system between the San Joaquin Valley and Los Angeles following a routine pipeline integrity inspection. It has not yet set a return service timetable.

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