German exporters set for 2012 record trade surplus

Updated 14 November 2012
0

German exporters set for 2012 record trade surplus

Germany is set for a record trade surplus this year, increasing 10 percent compared to 2011, to reach 174 billion euros ($ 221 billion), the BGA German federation of exporters and wholesalers said Tuesday.
"Despite a weakening at the end of the year, our foreign trade is facing a new all-time high this year," its president Anton Boerner said in a written statement.
Exports, which remain the motor of the German economy, Europe's biggest, are expected to grow by four percent to 1.1 trillion euros in 2012 while imports are set for three-percent growth to 929 billion euros, in nominal terms, it said.
Boerner reiterated that the volume of foreign trade, or the total of exports and imports, would surpass the 2.0-trillion-euro mark this year for the first time.
But the federation remains cautious. "The debt crisis with all its dangers will accompany Germany for a long time yet," its president warned.
In April, the BGA forecast a stable trade surplus of 159 billion euros for 2012 compared with the year earlier but has since revised downwards its projections for imports and, to a lesser extent, exports.


Brent crude oil rises for a sixth day as supplies tighten amid strong demand

Updated 24 April 2018
0

Brent crude oil rises for a sixth day as supplies tighten amid strong demand

  • US West Texas Intermediate crude futures were at $68.98 a barrel, up 34 cents
  • The potential of renewed US sanctions against Iran is pushing prices higher

SINGAPORE: Brent crude oil rose for sixth day on Tuesday, passing $75 a barrel, on expectations that supplies will tighten because fuel is rising at the same time the US may impose sanctions against Iran and OPEC-led output cuts remain in place.
Brent crude oil futures climbed to as high as $75.20 a barrel in early trading on Tuesday, the highest since Nov. 27, 2014. Brent was still at $75 a barrel at 0311 GMT up 29 cents, or 0.4 percent, from its last close.
Brent’s six-day rising streak is the most since a similar string of gains in December and it is up by more than 20 percent from its 2018 low in February.
US West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures were at $68.98 a barrel, up 34 cents, or 0.5 percent from their last settlement. On Thursday, WTI rose to as high as $69.56, the most since Nov. 28, 2014.
Markets have been lifted by supply cuts led by the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) which were introduced in 2017 with the aim of propping up the market.
The potential of renewed US sanctions against Iran is also pushing prices higher.
Stephen Innes, head of trading for Asia/Pacific at futures brokerage OANDA said new sanctions against Tehran “could push oil prices up as much as $5 per barrel.”
The US has until May 12 to decide whether it will leave the Iran nuclear deal and re-impose sanctions against OPEC’s third-largest producer, which would further tighten global supplies.
“Crude prices are now sitting at the highest levels in three years, reflecting ongoing concerns around geopolitical tensions in the Middle East, which is the source of nearly half of the world’s oil supply,” ANZ bank said.
“Oil strength is coming from Saudi Arabia’s recent commitment to get oil back up to between $70 to $80 per barrel as well as inventory levels that are back in the normal range,” said William O’Loughlin, investment analyst at Australia’s Rivkin Securities.
OPEC’s supply curtailments and the threat of new sanctions are occurring just as demand in Asia, the world’s biggest oil consuming region, has risen to a record as new and expanded refineries start up from China to Vietnam.
One of the few factors that has limited oil prices from surging even more is US production, which has shot up by more than a quarter since mid-2016 to over 10.54 million barrels per day (bpd), taking it past Saudi Arabia’s output of around 10 million bpd.
As a result of its rising output, US crude is increasingly appearing on global markets, from Europe to Asia, undermining OPEC’s efforts to tighten the market.