Brent oil gains $1 to claw back some losses

Libya’s announcement that four export terminals including Ras Lanuf, above, were being reopened was one of the catalysts for a correction, analysts say. (Reuters)
Updated 12 July 2018
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Brent oil gains $1 to claw back some losses

TOKYO: Brent crude rose more than $1 on Thursday, recouping some ground after its biggest one-day drop in two years in the previous session on news that Libya would resume oil exports and US-China trade tensions.
Brent crude rose $1.31, or 1.8 percent, to $74.71 by 0242 GMT after slumping 6.9 percent on Wednesday.
US West Texas Intermediate (WTI) added 42 cents, or 0.6 percent, to $70.80, after falling 5 percent the previous session.
“Markets in Asia are a lot more settled today,” said Greg McKenna, chief market strategist at AxiTrader in Sydney.
“Moves, the like of which we saw in Brent and to a lesser extent WTI, last night are often followed by some sort of bounce the following day or session,” he said.
The announcement by Libya’s National Oil Corp. that four export terminals were being reopened, ending a standoff that had shut down most of Libya’s oil output, was one of the catalysts for a correction, analysts said.
The reopening allows the return of as much as 850,000 barrels per day of crude into international markets, while an escalating US-China trade row has raised concerns about demand.
Oil had some supportive news late on Wednesday that US crude oil stocks fell by nearly 13 million barrels last week, the most in nearly two years, dropping overall crude stocks to their lowest point since February 2015.
The decline in overall inventories was partially due to a fall-off in stocks at the Cushing, Oklahoma, delivery hub for US crude futures, which were down by 2.1 million barrels.
“For WTI there is tightness at Cushing, which will be supportive over July and August,” said Virendra Chauhan, oil analyst at Energy Aspects in Singapore.
Supply to the US market has also been squeezed by the loss of some Canadian oil production.


OECD warns of global economic slowdown

Updated 21 November 2018
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OECD warns of global economic slowdown

  • ‘We urge policy-makers to help restore confidence in the international rules-based trading system’
  • Trade tensions have already shaved 0.1-0.2 percentage points off global GDP this year

PARIS: The global economy has peaked and faces a slowdown driven by international trade tensions and tighter monetary conditions, the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development warned Wednesday.
The OECD, which groups the top developed economies, said it had trimmed its growth forecast for 2019 to 3.5 percent from the previous 3.7 percent.
The 2018 estimate was left unchanged at 3.7 percent.
For 2020, the global economy should grow 3.5 percent, it said in its latest Economic Outlook report.
“The shakier outlook in 2019 reflects deteriorating prospects, principally in emerging markets such as Turkey, Argentina and Brazil,” it said.
“The further slowdown in 2020 is more a reflection of developments in advanced economies as slower trade and lower fiscal and monetary support take their toll.”
OECD chief Angel Gurria highlighted problems caused by trade conflicts and political uncertainty — an apparent reference to US President Donald Trump’s stand-off with China which has roiled the markets.
“We urge policy-makers to help restore confidence in the international rules-based trading system,” Gurria said in a statement.
Trade tensions have already shaved 0.1-0.2 percentage points off global GDP this year, the Economic Outlook report said.
If Washington were to hike tariffs to 25 percent on all Chinese imports — as Trump has threatened to do — world economic growth could fall to close to three percent in 2020.
Growth rates would drop by an estimated 0.8 percent in the US and by 0.6 percent in China, it added.
For the moment, the OECD puts US economic growth at 2.9 percent this year and 2.7 percent in 2019, unchanged from previous estimates, but trimmed China by 0.1 percentage point each to 6.6 percent and 6.3 percent.
It warned that “a much sharper slowdown in Chinese growth would damage global growth significantly, particularly if it were to hit financial market confidence.”
Laurence Boone, OECD Chief Economist, said “There are few indications at present that the slowdown will be more severe than projected. But the risks are high enough to raise the alarm and prepare for any storms ahead.”