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US ULSD monthly exports have sharpest two-month fall recorded by EIA

US ultra low sulfur diesel exports fell by 6.806 million barrels to30.517 million barrels in September, driven by falling demand from Europe andLatin America, according to Energy Information Administration data.

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While that is only the second-sharpest monthly drop of the year, secondto August, the decline from both months combines for the largest two-monthfall in ULSD exports, at 15.365 million barrels,ever recorded by the EIA,which has data going back to January 2009.

ULSD exports have been falling from a peak of 45.882 million barrels inJuly, the highest mark ever reported by the agency.

The biggest decline in exports was to France, which declined from 2.743million barrels in August to 606,000 in September.

Similarly, exports to the UK declined by 488,000 barrels during thesame period, exports to Belgium fell 575,000 barrels and exports to Spain fellby 587,000 barrels.

The European declines somewhat tracks the restart of the largest refineryon the continent. Shell's 404,000-barrel Pernis refinery in the Netherlandswas shut by a fire on July 29 and began its restart process on August 24.

Latin American demand for US diesel was also curbed. Exports to Brazilfell by 298,000 barrels, Chile by 1.124 million barrels, Costa Rica by 556,000barrels, Peru by 739,000 barrels, El Salvador by 313,000 barrels and Guatemalaby 1.137 million barrels.

Exports to Mexico, however, rose sharply. September ULSD flows into thecountry rose by 2.092 million barrels to 8.549 million barrels. That is themost ULSD Mexico has ever imported from the US, according to EIA data.

Salina Cruz, Mexico's largest refinery at 330,000 b/d, restartedoperations at the end of October after repairing damage to the refinery'spower plant, due to a series of large earthquakes and aftershocks inSeptember. The refinery first halted operations in mid-June, after a flood andsubsequent fire. While repairing the damage, Pemex also advanced scheduledmaintenance and upgrades at the plant.

--Allen Reed, Allen.Reed@spglobal.com

--Edited by Richard Rubin, richard.rubin@spglobal.com