Wires

Asia Fuel Oil-Inter-month spreads flip back into backwardation

SINGAPORE, Oct 10 (Reuters) - Asia's fuel oil market extended gains onWednesday, with the first four inter-month spreads gaining a dollar and aboveamid renewed hopes that demand would recover as players start stockpiling forwinter.

The balance October/November inter-month spreads, which remains prompt untilnext Monday, flipped back into a backwardation structure on Wednesday.

The contract was valued at a backwardation of $1.00 a tonne by the Asianclose, the highest in nearly a week, according to Reuters data.

South Korean utilities have entered the spot market to procure supply forthe upcoming winter. Western Power and East-West Power are seeking 80,000 tonnesof high sulphur fuel oil (HSFO) for November-delivery.

Enquiries from Chinese independent refineries have also emerged just daysafter the country returns from a week-long public holiday, industry sourcessaid. However, most refiners preferred staying at the sidelines due to theuncertain outlook of crude prices.

In Japan, fuel oil consumption has fallen as summer temperatures have comeoff, but demand is expected to pick up slightly during the winter.

Tokyo Electric Power's (Tepco) fuel oil consumption fell in September to678,000 kilolitres, down 12 percent from the previous month. However, theutility bought slightly more fuel oil for the month at 685,000 kilolitres versusAugust's 677,000 kilolitres.

* TENDERS:

- Taiwan's Formosa is offering 13,000 tonnes of pyrolysis fuel oil and40,000 tonnes of high sulphur fuel oil, for Oct. 23-25 lifting from Mailiao, viatender which closes on Oct. 11, with a same-day validity.

* CASH DEALS: No trades reported

* REFINERY NEWS:

- Vietnam has shut its sole refinery after a glitch at a gasoline-makingunit, forcing the plant's buyers such as Saigon Petro to cover cargoes at shortnotice, industry sources said on Wednesday.

CASH ($/T) ASIA CLOSE Change % Change Prev RICCloseCargo - 180cst 662.80 22.35 3.49 640.45Diff - 180cst 0.75 1.15 -287.50 -0.40Cargo - 380cst 650.45 19.85 3.15 630.60Diff - 380cst 1.00 0.20 25.00 0.80Bunker (Ex-wharf)- 655.00 20.00 3.15 635.00380cstBunker (Ex-wharf) 4.55 0.15 3.41 4.40PremiumSWAPS ($/T) ASIA CLOSE Change % Change Prev RIC(0830 GMT) CloseBrent M1 114.49 1.95 1.73 112.54180cst M1 662.50 22.00 3.43 640.50180cst M1/M2 1.00 1.75 -233.33 -0.75180cst M2 661.50 20.25 3.16 641.25Visco M1 12.75 2.12 19.94 10.63Visco M2 12.38 0.88 7.65 11.50380cst M1 649.75 19.87 3.15 629.88380cst M1/M2 0.63 0.50 384.62 0.13380cst M2 649.13 19.38 3.08 629.75Cracks 180-Dubai M1 -8.13 1.56 -16.10 -9.69Cracks 180-Dubai M2 -7.68 1.38 -15.23 -9.06East-West M1 37.00 2.50 7.25 34.50East-West M2 37.00 1.75 4.96 35.25Barges M1 625.50 19.50 3.22 606.00Barges M1/M2 1.00 1.00 N/A 0.00Barges M2 624.50 18.50 3.05 606.00Crack Barges-Brent M1 -18.41 0.90 -4.66 -19.31Crack Barges-Brent M2 -17.35 1.03 -5.60 -18.38

(Reporting by Lee Yen Nee; Editing by William Hardy)

((lee.yennee@thomsonreuters.com)(+65 6870 3823)(Reuters Messaging:lee.yennee.thomsonreuters.com@reuters.net))

Keywords: MARKETS ASIA/FUELOIL