Pipelines & Transport News By Continents

Brent crude oil prices drop more than $1/bbl on low demand growth forecast

Oil prices gained modestly on the New York market Sept. 9 but dropped by more than $1/bbl on the London market, which analysts attributed to expectations of weak global oil demand growth.

 

The Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries forecast world oil demand growth in 2014 will reach 1.05 million b/d, representing a downward revision of around 50,000 b/d from its earlier forecast. In 2015, world oil demand is expected to increase by 1.19 million b/d, representing a marginal downward adjustment in the cartel’s outlook.

 

OPEC production rose during August because Libyan output increased. OPEC reported 30.35 million b/d of production in August in its Monthly Oil Market Report.

 

The US Energy Information Administration on Sept. 9 raised its forecasts for US oil production. In the latest Short-Term Energy Outlook, EIA said it expects 8.53 million b/d in US oil output for 2014. For 2015, EIA forecast oil production will reach 9.53 million b/d, up 250,000 b/d for its earlier STEO (OGJ Online, Sept. 9, 2014).

 

In the weekly petroleum status report, EIA estimated US commercial crude oil inventories, excluding those in the Strategic Petroleum Reserve, decreased by 1 million bbl for the week ended Sept. 5 compared with the previous week.

 

At 358.6 million bbl, US crude oil inventories are near the upper limit of the average range for this time of year, EIA said.

 

Gasoline supplies rise

Total motor gasoline inventories increased by 2.4 million bbl for the week ended Sept. 5, and are in the middle of the average range, EIA said. Finished gasoline inventories remained unchanged while blending components inventories increased.

 

Distillate fuel inventories increased by 4.1 million bbl last week but are below the lower limit of the average range for this time of year. Propane-propylene inventories fell 100,000 bbl last week but are above the upper limit of the average range.

 

US crude refinery inputs averaged over 16.3 million b/d during the week ended Sept. 5, which was 96,000 b/d less than the previous week’s average. Refineries operated at 93.9% of capacity last week. Gasoline production decreased last week, averaging 9 million b/d, EIA said. Distillate fuel production increased last week, averaging 5.1 million b/d.

 

US crude oil imports averaged over 7.6 million b/d for the week ended Sept. 5, down by 54,000 b/d from the previous week. Over the last 4 weeks, crude oil imports averaged 7.6 million b/d, 6.8% below the same 4-week period last year.

 

Total US motor gasoline imports, including both finished gasoline and gasoline blending components, last week averaged 324,000 b/d. Distillate fuel imports averaged 87,000 b/d last week, EIA estimated.

 

Energy prices

The New York Mercantile Exchange October crude oil contract gained slightly Sept. 9 while the November contract dropped. The October contract gained 9¢ to $92.75/bbl. The November contract dropped 16¢ to $91.89/bbl.

 

The natural gas contract for October gained 10.8¢ to a rounded $3.98/MMbtu. On the US cash market, gas at Henry Hub, La., was $3.94/MMbtu, up 9¢.

 

Heating oil for October delivery was down 1.79¢ to a rounded $2.79/gal. Reformulated gasoline stock for oxygenate blending for October delivery dropped 1.35¢ to a rounded $2.55/gal.

 

The October ICE contract for Brent crude delivery was down $1.04 to $99.16/bbl. The November Brent contract declined 93¢ to $99.93/bbl. The ICE gas oil contract for September dropped 25¢ to $847/tonne.

 

The average price for the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries’ basket of 12 benchmark crudes on Sept. 9 was $96.99/bbl, down 1¢.

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