Oil slips as economic concerns counter tightening supplies
14 September, 2018, 01:49 | Author: Regina Silva
Brent crude futures rose US$1.69, or 2.2 percent, to settle at US$79.06 a barrel.
Oil markets were also watching Hurricane Florence offshore the United States amid surging demand for gasoline and diesel, although crude output will not be affected on the storm's current route.
Major Japanese refiners were said last week to have officially notified Iran that they would halt all imports of Iranian oil for October while they wait for the Japan-U.S. talks on Iranian oil imports to make a permanent decision on how to proceed in November. Yesterday's close above the key resistance line paves the way for a test of the $80 barrel mark, before a retest of the YTD high.
"According to Bloomberg, in case the Iran sanctions come into place, oil price could go up to $150 a barrel", reported ET.
"Crude oil output increased mostly in Libya, Iraq, Nigeria and Saudi Arabia, while production declined in Iran, Venezuela and Algeria", the 15-member oil cartel said.
"South Korea bought 194,000 bpd from Iran in July", OilPrice said.
"Things are tightening up", the agency said in its monthly report, but added: "As we move into 2019, a possible risk to our forecast lies in some key emerging economies, partly due to currency depreciations versus the USA dollar raising the cost of imported energy".
Worldwide oil benchmark, Brent crude, extended its gains on Wednesday, trading near a two-month high as shrinking oil inventories pointed to an increasingly tight global market. Oil production has been hit by attacks on oil facilities and blockades, though previous year it partially recovered to around one million barrels per day.
The Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries, in its monthly oil market report for September released on Wednesday, said crude oil production from Nigeria rose to 1.71 million barrels per day in August from 1.53 million bpd the previous month.
Although the shipment hiatus is unlikely to signal that China has been purposefully scaling back purchases to comply with US pressure to have Iranian oil sales at zero, it could mean that Chinese refiners were looking for better terms for Iranian oil purchases, according to Bloomberg.
Their combined output has risen by 3.8 million bpd since September 2014, more than the peak output Iran has managed over the last three years.
Chinese media Xinhua said the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) forecast on Tuesday that U.S. crude oil production will average 10.7 million bpd in 2018, up from 9.4 million barrels bpd in 2017, and will average 11.5 million barrels bpd in 2019.
Much of these gains in household income and workforce participation come as the economy's strength continues to climb in 2018. Crossing the $61,000 mark was important as it signals the American middle-class is finally earning more than it did in 1999.
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