Canada crude -Heavy and synthetic grades regain some ground

Reuters

* Dec WCS trades at $34.75/bbl below WTI

* Dec synthetic trades at $13.25/bbl below WTI

CALGARY, Alberta, Nov 13 (Reuters) - Canadian cash crudeprices strengthened on Wednesday, extending a rebound fromrecent multi-month lows as some traders took advantage of theopportunity to buy cheap.

Western Canada Select heavy blend for December delivery lasttraded at $34.75 per barrel below the West Texas Intermediatebenchmark, according to Shorcan Energy brokers.

That compares with a settlement price $35.75 per barrelbelow WTI on Tuesday, and a 10-month low of $41.50 per barrelbelow the benchmark hit on Nov. 5.

Heavy grades have fallen sharply as a result of Enbridge Inc rationing more space on more congested crude exportpipelines, robust production from the oil sands and unplannedrefinery outages.

Some market players in Calgary said this week's slightrecovery in prices could be limited, given that the fundamentaloutlook was little changed and problems remained with crudegetting bottlenecked in Alberta.

"It's one of the cheapest barrels in the world, so peoplewant to buy it," said one crude trader, adding that refiningmargins were improving slightly too.

Many Canadian crude producers are looking to use rail as analternative to congested pipelines, but the infrastructureneeded to transport large volumes of crude from Western Canadais not yet in place.

Alberta's first unit train crude-by-rail terminal will notbe ready to start shipping crude until mid-December, a few weekslater than previously anticipated, the CEO of operating companyCanexus said on Wednesday.

Light synthetic crude from the oil sands for Decemberdelivery also strengthened slightly. It last traded at $13.25per barrel below WTI, compared with a settlement price of $13.60per barrel below the benchmark on Tuesday, and a 19-month low of$15.50 per barrel below WTI hit on Nov. 4.

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