* Western Canada Select (WCS) heavy blend crude for March delivery in Hardisty, Alberta, traded on Tuesday afternoon at $9.30 a barrel below WTI crude futures , narrower than Monday’s settle of $9.90 below WTI, according to Net Energy Exchange.
* The differential is volatile due to uncertainty about the Alberta government’s next move on mandatory curtailment levels, a Calgary-based trader said. Demand from U.S. refiners after U.S. sanctions against Venezuela’s state-owned oil company helped narrow the differential, the trader said.
* Alberta eased oil curtailments in February and March, earlier than expected.
* Light synthetic crude from the oil sands for March delivery traded at 60 cents over WTI, compared with Friday’s settle of 10 cents over WTI.
* Imperial Oil , one of Canada’s biggest crude producers, said last week, however, that it was reducing rail shipments to “near zero” because they were uneconomic due to Alberta’s forced production curtailments that narrowed differentials.
* Global oil prices fell on Tuesday, pulling back from two-month highs as concerns over a global economic slowdown crept back into the market and a stronger dollar also weighed