Oil market stabilizing: Saudi energy minister

Energy, Industry and Mineral Resources Minister Khalid Al-Falih
Updated 10 July 2016
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Oil market stabilizing: Saudi energy minister

JEDDAH: Energy, Industry and Mineral Resources Minister Khalid Al-Falih said on Sunday the oil market was becoming more balanced and prices were stabilizing.
Al-Falih said Saudi Arabia would always strive to stabilize the oil market, a statement by the energy ministry added.
“In doing so, the Kingdom secures the flow of oil supplies as it retains a spare production capacity,” the minister, attending a climate meeting in Berlin, was quoted as saying in the statement.
His remarks echo earlier comments made on Monday by the Saudi minister in Dhahran at a meeting with newly appointed OPEC secretary general, Mohammed Barkindo.
Crude prices inched up in choppy trading on Friday but Brent notched its largest weekly drop in nearly six months.
Brent crude futures ended the session up 36 cents, or 0.8 percent, at $46.76 per barrel, after trading between $47.23 and $46.15.
US crude’s West Texas Intermediate (WTI) futures settled up 27 cents at $45.41, compared with an earlier drop to $44.77 and a high of $45.97.
Both benchmarks were down nearly 8 percent for the week — the largest weekly slide for Brent since January and the biggest weekly drop for WTI since February.
Crude futures remain some 75 percent above 12-year lows of $27 for Brent and $26 for WTI hit in the first quarter.
But the market has gyrated since hitting above $50 as a glut of refined products replaced worries about crude oversupply that caused a near two-year long tumble earlier.
Futures hit two-month lows on Thursday, with WTI breaking below key support of $45.83 after weekly drawdowns in US crude looked inadequate to assuage investor concerns.


Oil slips even as OPEC mulls cut

Updated 20 November 2018
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Oil slips even as OPEC mulls cut

  • US crude stockpiles have grown for eight straight weeks, and data last week showed inventories swelled by the most in more than a year
  • A trade dispute between the US and China is one reason investors are a lot warier about the outlook for oil demand growth next year

NEW YORK: Oil futures fell about 1 percent on Monday amid global oversupply worries, but losses were muted as investors eyed potential sanctions on Iran from the EU, a possible production cut from OPEC and slightly bullish storage drawdown in US crude stocks.
Brent crude was down 70 cents a barrel at $66.06 at 4:37 p.m. GMT, having recovered from a session low at $65.27. US crude futures traded 15 cents lower at $56.31 a barrel.
EU foreign ministers endorsed a French government decision to sanction Iranian nationals accused of a bomb plot in France, potentially allowing the measures to take effect across the bloc, three diplomats said.
Potential sanctions from the EU would come as the US has granted waivers to some of Iran’s oil customers, muting the policy’s expected impact on global supplies.
The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries, OPEC, led by Saudi Arabia, is pushing for the group and its partners to reduce output by 1 million to 1.4 million barrels per day to prevent a build-up of unused fuel.
Russian Energy Minister Alexander Novak said that Russia, which is not an OPEC member, planned to sign a partnership agreement with the group, and that details would be discussed at OPEC’s Dec. 6 meeting in Vienna.
“For a cut to be successful in supporting the market, they’re going to have to present a front that is not fractured and the chance of that is looking less and less likely as Dec. 6 approaches,” said Bob Yawger, director of energy futures at Mizuho in New York.
While a large cut would be supportive of crude futures, clear signals from producers are needed to lift prices notably, Yawger said. “We lack any certainty other than that the market is oversupplied in the US and everybody else is trying to deal with it.”
US crude stockpiles have grown for eight straight weeks, and data last week showed inventories swelled by the most in more than a year, weighing on the market.
Traders said futures pared losses on bullish stockpile data Monday as they said that energy information provider Genscape reported that crude inventories fell in the week ended Friday.
Brent is almost 25 percent below early October’s 2018 peak of $86.74, as evidence of slowing demand has materialized and output from the US, Russia and Saudi Arabia hit historic highs.
“Oil prices rose (last week) on the hope that OPEC and partners will act to reverse bearish sentiment, but from a technical set-up, bear mode remains intact,” OANDA strategist Stephen Innes said.
A trade dispute between the US and China is one reason investors are a lot warier about the outlook for oil demand growth next year.
Fund managers cut their bullish exposure to crude futures and options to the lowest since around mid-2017 this month.
Weekly exchange data shows money managers hold a combined net long position equivalent to around 364 million barrels of US and Brent crude futures and options, down from over 800 million barrels two months ago.
“The main trend remains bearish as investors no longer believe in a risk of supply tightness for crude,” ActivTrades chief analyst Carlo Alberto De Casa said.