Oil prices held steady Tuesday morning, with Brent <LCOc1> trading at $56.14/bbl as of 9:30 AM UKT, broadly unchanged from the previous settle, while WTI <CLc1> stood at $50.58/bbl at the same time. The WTI-Brent spread still remains wide, standing at-$5.56/bbl at the time of writing. It has been reported by Reuters news that Libya’s major Sharara oilfield has been shut in due to renewed unrest, affecting production of over 230,000 bpd.
Meanwhile, Thomson Reuters Oil Research assessed crude oil exports from the Arab Gulf up by 7.8 million barrels (mmbbl) w-o-w, recovering to a weekly rate of 127 mmbbl, driven by higher exports from Saudi Arabia and Kuwait. Saudi exports rose by 6.1 mmbbl w-o-w to 48.17 mmbbl, although average shipments for September fell by 140,000 bpd to 7.1 million bpd. Kuwait exports rebounded by 5 mmbbl compared to the week prior, standing at 13.86 mmbbl, with around 85% of weekly shipments heading to Asia. September exports were assessed at 2 million bpd, a slight increase of 20,000 bpd from August levels.
A preliminary Reuters poll estimated that US crude inventories likely fell by 500,000 bbl in the week ending September 29th. Gasoline stocks are estimated to have increased by 1 mmbbl last week, while distillate stocks were expected to fall by 1.9 mmbbl. Refinery utilisation is expected to have increased by 1.4% from 88.6% of total capacity seen in the week prior. Additionally, Thomson Reuters Oil Research assessed US seaborne crude imports at 4.8 million bpd for last week, up by 8% from the previous week.
The Oil Research Team
Supply Chain & Commodities Research