Oil prices came under pressure Monday morning following strong gains of more than 2% last Friday. Crude markers rallied at the end of the week on the back of a pipeline leak in the US, albeit ended the week with losses, after six weeks of gains.
5,000 bbls of crude oil were spilled in South Dakota due to a leak in TransCanada’s Keystone pipeline. The 590,000 bpd pipeline suspended operations in order to contain the leak. The pipeline will remain inactive until it gets approval to restart from the US Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA).
Depending on the length of the suspension, US refineries may have to draw down on stocks of heavier crudes to keep operations unaffected. Seaborne arrivals of medium-heavy crude are likely to increase in the coming weeks on the back of the development.
The fleet of oil rigs in the US remained flat last week at 738 units. Rigs in Texas however, increased by 7 units to 449, from 442 previously, showcasing the continued focus in the Permian and Eagle Ford plays.
In spite of falling prices last week speculators in the US increased their net long position by 31.9 million bbls, to reach 349.71 million bbls. Longs increased by 12.57 million bbls to 413.36 million bbls, while shorts were trimmed by 19.34 million bbls, to 63.65 million bbls.
Producers trimmed their net position by 28.48 million bbls, as longs nosedived by 77.57 million bbls. Shorts were also trimmed by 49.09 million bbls as producers appear to lock in profits.
The Oil Research Team
Supply Chain & Commodities Research