Crude exports have been slashed from US Gulf coast ports after the former Hurricane Beryl hit Texas as a category 1 storm on Sunday.

The hurricane had wreaked havoc in the Caribbean and Mexico, before veering north.

On Sunday, the Texas ports of Corpus Christi, Houston, Galveston, Freeport and Texas City were closed.

All vessel movement and cargo operations were restricted ahead of gale-force winds.

Exports of crude from the US have dropped dramatically over the past three days, according to analytics company Kpler.

After 6.4m barrels were shipped from Corpus Christi and Houston combined on Friday, 3.5m barrels were exported over the following two days, and nothing on Monday, Kpler said.

BRS Group said volatility in aframax and MR rates should be expected out of the US Gulf.

These are likely to bring “downward corrections” depending on the intensity and duration of crude and oil products disruptions.

This could then be followed by spikes later in the month, the shipbroker believes.

Clean tanker exports had been running above last year’s levels, as a flurry of activity took place ahead of expected weather disruptions, BRS added.

The hurricane effect could see demand for European petrol increase into the US Atlantic coast, providing a short-term boost to rates on that route, it argued.

MR rates slid to $13,199 per day out of Houston on Monday, for 38,000-dwt cargoes heading to Amsterdam, according to UK broker Howe Robinson Partners.

This compares with an average so far this year of $22,782 per day.

The US National Hurricane Center has forecast a strong hurricane season, which could further disrupt tanker loadings, while geopolitical uncertainty looks likely to go on, UK broker Gibsons said.

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