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Commodities - Crude Oil Settles Higher, Best Performance in 7-Weeks

17 September 2017, 02:13 | Hattie Nash

Commodities - Crude Oil Settles Higher, Best Performance in 7-Weeks

FSMNews

-The price drop in Asia comes following sharp gains throughout the week as USA oil facilities recover operations post hurricanes.

It was followed by the IEA saying the global oil glut was shrinking, thanks to strong European and US demands as well as production declines in OPEC and non-OPEC countries.

That was followed by the International Energy Agency report in 2017 by 100,000 barrels a day (bpd) to 1.6m bpd, or 1.7%.

The re-balancing of oversupplied world markets is continuing, it said, with Opec supplies falling for the first time in five months and inventories of refined fuels in developed nations subsiding toward average levels.

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"Based on recent bets made by investors, expectations are that markets are tightening and that prices will rise, albeit very modestly", the agency said.

- Reuters picNEW YORK, Sept 16 ― Brent oil prices held near five-month highs yesterday and were on track for the biggest weekly gain since late July, on forecasts for rising demand and the gradual restart of United States oil refineries.

The post-Harvey refinery recovery is underway, however, as data earlier in the week from IHS Markit indicated that 13 of 20 affected US refineries were restarting operations.

Oil prices, which have recently received some support from reports about discussions of another possible extension of the OPEC production cut deal, remained stable following the release of the EIA report, with WTI trading at US$48.75 a barrel and Brent crude at US$54.62 a barrel. With the lack of new major project sanctions, the bank analysts expect conventional non-Opec supply to start declining post-2018 and maintain their 2018 and 2019 Brent price assumptions at $65 and $70 a barrel, respectively. It flipped briefly into contango at end August before flipping back into backwardation September 5, and settling at 25 cents/b at the NY close Thursday.

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"On the USA side, steadily declining rig counts of late have raised the possibility of stalled US production gains, with current output still holding below pre-Harvey levels", said Robbie Fraser, commodity analyst at Schneider Electric (PA:), in a note.

In its latest Short-Term Energy Outlook, out on Tuesday, the EIA said that the effect of the supply disruptions on the Gulf Coast will last for a while, which would boost the uncertainty around oil and gas prices in the coming weeks.

"OECD demand growth continues to be much stronger than expected, particularly in Europe and the USA", the IEA said.

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