What’s the difference between Brent Crude and Light Crude?

Category: commodity-faq

The global markets require that the commodities they list are standardized so that any unit can be interchangeable and of equal quality with any other.

In the case of crude oil, the sulphur, wax, and metal content of a type of crude oil can vary greatly from another. This can make it harder and costlier to refine certain crude oils into the petrol used to power consumer vehicles.

A region’s crude oil can be measured for quality and compared to that of a different region, and over the years, different benchmark grades have developed.

  • The most popular of these grades is West Texas Intermediate crude oil, which is also known as “light sweet crude,” meaning that it is less dense, less viscous, and lower in sulphur and heavy metal contaminants than “heavy crudes.”
  • The second most popular premium-grade crude oil is Brent Crude, which is considered a light crude despite being slightly heavier than WTI.

WTI (LCRUDE) is extracted from the North American Permian basin, whereas Brent crude is extracted from over a dozen wells in the North Sea of England. These offshore wells are harder and costlier to mine, which causes Brent crude to trade at a slight premium as compared to WTI.