Friday, 24 May, 2019


Brent crude takes its cue from falling stock markets

Crude Oil Crude Oil
Conrad Doyle | 02 November, 2018, 07:34

Both contracts have recovered some ground over the last week but are around $10 a barrel below four-year highs reached in the first week of October.

US supply data also showed a sixth straight weekly rise in domestic crude inventories.

Oil has been caught up in broad financial market slumps this month, with stocks under pressure from the trade war between the world's two largest economies.

The United States has imposed tariffs on $250 billion worth of Chinese goods, and China has responded with retaliatory duties on $110 billion worth of US goods.

In North America, however, there is no oil shortage as USA crude oil production C-OUT-T-EIA has increased by nearly a third since mid-2016 to around 11 million barrels per day.

Oil held losses near $67 a barrel on speculation that an escalating trade dispute between the United States and China will dampen global growth at a time when American crude inventories are growing.

"When the Russians start talking about keeping the production levels high and even the possibility that they need to increase it because of a possible tightness in supply, that brought on some selling pressure", said Gene McGillian, director of market research at Tradition Energy in Stamford, Connecticut.

The US is set to reimpose sanctions on Iran's oil industry on November 5, following President Donald Trump's decision to walk out of the 2015 nuclear deal in May.

"Today, US officials are lying to the world that Saudi Arabia and other countries should replace Iranian oil so that the price of oil doesn't rise. The second one is global economic growth momentum slowing down", IEA chief Fatih Birol told an energy conference in Singapore.

That is an increase of 10 million bpd since the start of the decade and means the three producers alone now meet a third of global crude demand.

The US dollar index also rose, supported by robust US consumer spending data.

Analysts expect the situation to only worsen on November 4 when sanctions kick in directly targeting countries that buy Iranian oil by blocking them from access to USA markets and financial institutions. Stockpiles were expected to have risen about 4.1 million barrels in the week ended October 26, an extended Reuters poll showed on Tuesday.

Washington reintroduced sanctions against Iran's currency trade, metals and auto sectors in August after USA withdrawal from a multinational 2015 deal that lifted sanctions in return for limits on Iran's nuclear program.

As Washington prepares to renew sanctions against Iran's energy sector next week, Iranian tankers are increasingly switching off their tracking systems, according to oil experts.

This story has not been edited by Firstpost staff and is generated by auto-feed.

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