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Pausing for a breath

Oil price settled broadly unchanged-to-slightly-higher yesterday (with the notable exception of the CME RBOB contract, which fell) as US economic data strengthened the dollar. Retail sales in America unexpectedly rose by 0.7% last month against a forecast of a 0.8% dip. If it is a proof of a solid economic backdrop then the Federal Reserve [...]

2021-09-17T07:25:53+00:00September 17th, 2021|

Tightening of the oil balance

The returning theme in the latest set of monthly supply-demand reports has been decreasing supply from producers outside the OPEC+ alliance and gradually improving global oil demand, which is the function of vaccination programmes, however sporadic they are. This view resonated through the weekly Petroleum Status Report yesterday. The most important aspect of the statistics [...]

2021-09-16T08:38:34+00:00September 16th, 2021|

Bearish narrative, bullish data

The signs were ominous last week. When the EIA released its latest monthly update, the writing was on the wall that OPEC and the IEA would follow in the footsteps of the EIA. After all, the protracted spread of the coronavirus in different parts of the world, the uneven worldwide distribution of vaccines, supply bottlenecks [...]

2021-09-14T09:38:03+00:00September 14th, 2021|

Higher, Lower or Stick?

After having gone back and forth in recent weeks, oil prices seem to have settled around $70/bbl. Many would argue that this is a Goldilocks situation, that is one in which the oil price doesn’t risk demand destruction and one that isn’t too low that it disincentivizes production. Will prices stay at their current sweet [...]

2021-09-13T08:08:15+00:00September 13th, 2021|

China jitters stifle sentiment

The price action in the oil markets was initially subdued yesterday. Both crude benchmarks then turned positive following reports that a ship was stuck in the Suez Canal. Shortly after, prices plunged into red after China announced plans to release state crude oil reserves for the first time. The move is aimed at cooling rising feedstock [...]

2021-09-10T07:45:44+00:00September 10th, 2021|

Struggling for upside

Another day, another decline. Brent lost 53 cts/bbl yesterday while WTI settled down 94 cts/bbl after playing catch up with Monday’s losses as it returned from the Labour Day Holiday. Upside potential appears to have been expunged by the bearish afterglow of the latest Saudi price cuts. On Sunday, the OPEC kingpin slashed oil prices [...]

2021-09-08T08:00:55+00:00September 8th, 2021|

Growing Chinese crude oil thirst offsets Saudi OSP cut

When one of the world’s biggest producers announces its official selling price (OSP) the market pays attention. Asian refiners, the key market for Saudi Arabia, have been offered cargoes at a steep discount for next month compared to September. It might be taken as an admission that the latest round of the coronavirus and supply [...]

2021-09-07T07:58:31+00:00September 7th, 2021|

Dancing to Ida’s tune

Mother Nature can be a cruel mistress sometimes, as large parts of the US discovered last week when it was left reeling by Hurricane Ida. The first major hurricane of the year to significantly impact the oil activities in the Gulf of Mexico knocked out more than 90% of the region’s offshore oil production. Around 1.7 [...]

2021-09-06T11:21:38+00:00September 6th, 2021|
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