U.S. Cash Crude-Coastal grade eases after volatile roll period

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Jan 26 (Reuters) -Coastal grade eased on Thursday at the end of the volatile roll period when traders squaring their crude positions ended, dealers said.

Mars Sour weakened $1.35 to a $3 discount. It had climbed to a more than two month high during the roll trade period.

WTI at East Houston, known as MEH, eased 15 cents even as the spread between West Texas Intermediate and Brent crude hovered around its widest since November.

WTI Midland was unchanged at a $1.75 premium to U.S. crude.

The three-day roll period follows the expiry of the prompt futures contact, with grades typically being more volatile during the period as traders use the window to adjust their slates and net out exposures.

In refining news, Valero Energy Corp VLO.N said product margins will stay elevated boosted by higher demand for fuel amid tight crude supplies.

Valero also said it plans to buy more heavy crude as it plans to begin the initial startup of a new coker at its 335,000 barrel-per-day (bpd) Port Arthur, Texas refinery between late April and early May.

Heavy crude has been heavily discount due to higher supply, increased freight rates and impact of International Maritime Organization regulation to lower sulfur in marine fuels.

* Light Louisiana Sweet WTC-LLS for March delivery rose 75 cents to a midpoint of $3 premium and traded between a $2.75 and $3.25 a barrel premium to U.S. crude futures CLc1.

* Mars Sour WTC-MRS dropped $135 to a midpoint of a $3 discount and traded between a $2.75 and a $3.25 a barrel premium to U.S. crude futures CLc1.

* WTI Midland WTC-WTM was unchanged at a midpoint of $1.75, trading between a $1.50 and a $2 a barrel premium to U.S. crude futures CLc1.

* West Texas Sour WTC-WTS fell 80 cents to a midpoint of a $1.05 discount and traded between a $1.50 and a $60 a barrel discount to U.S. crude futures CLc1.

* WTI at East Houston, also known as MEH, traded between $1.80 and a $2.20 over WTI.

* ICE Brent March LCOc1 futures rose $1.35 to settle at $87.47 a barrel.

* WTI March crude CLc1 futures rose $0.86 to settle at $81.01 a barrel.

* The Brent/WTI spread WTCLc1-LCOc1 widened 49 cents to settle at minus $6.46, after hitting a high of minus $5.74 and a low of minus $6.47.

Reporting by Arathy Somasekhar; editing by Diane Craft


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