Trading slowed as sellers reassessed market values following a string of tender awards that helped clear out a backlog of cargoes.
* A smaller March loading programme for Qua Iboe, along with Indian refineries favouring it in recent tenders, helped to lift sellers’ hopes for larger differentials to dated Brent.
* Offers were as high as 90 cents above dated Brent, while bids were close to 30 or 40 cent premiums.
* Still, traders said light crudes were struggling to sell quickly, with cargoes available from Libya, the North Sea, the Caspian and West Africa.
Meanwhile Royal Dutch Shell cannot be sued in London over oil spills in Nigeria, Britain’s High Court ruled on Thursday, in a setback to attempts to hold UK multinationals liable at home for their subsidiaries’ actions abroad.