OIL PRICES UP
Oil prices rose on Friday, lifted by firm economic indicators from the United States and Germany which could support fuel demand, but analysts warned that crude markets were threatened by another downturn because of ongoing oversupply.
Front month U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures were trading at $38.02 per barrel at 0653 GMT, up 76 cents, or 2 percent, from their last close. International Brent futures were up 60 cents at $40.03 a barrel.
"We believe the current oil price is unsustainable and expect a fundamental price recovery when markets move into better balance in mid- to late-2H16," investment bank Jefferies said on Friday, although it added that "the recovery could be protracted."
Traders said there was some bullish sentiment in oil markets early on Friday following statements by the U.S. Federal Reserve that the world's biggest economy was on the path of more economic growth.
In Europe, rating agency Moody's said that Germany - the continent's biggest economy - expected a slight acceleration of its growth to 1.8 percent, benefiting from robust domestic demand.
Despite encouraging reports from two of the world's biggest economies, analysts warned that oil prices could fall again soon as there were few signs that a global overhang in production of at least 1 million barrels per day (bpd) would be addressed soon.
"Investors are lacking confidence about improved U.S. seasonal demand, as a decline in U.S. crude stockpiles (reported earlier this week) was mainly attributable to weaker imports and improved refinery utilisation," ANZ bank said.
Outside the United States and especially in parts of the Middle East, production is still soaring.
Iraq said on Thursday that exports from its southern ports had hit almost 3.5 million bpd by April, up from an average of 3.29 million bpd in March, putting doubts on the feasibility of a planned meeting by major producers on April 17 to freeze output levels.
Iran, which was relieved from crippling international sanctions in January which had cut its crude exports to little more than 1 million bpd, has said it would only participate in a production freeze once it had regained its pre-sanctions levels of 4 million bpd, pouring cold water on any hopes that ballooning oversupply can be reined in soon.
ANZ bank said that there were signs that a renewed downtrend could be imminent for crude oil prices.
|June, 22, 13:40:00|
|June, 22, 13:35:00|
|June, 22, 13:30:00|
|June, 22, 13:25:00|
|June, 22, 13:20:00|
|June, 22, 13:15:00|
U.S. EIA - Venezuela holds the largest oil reserves in the world, in large part because of the heavy oil reserves in the Orinoco Oil Basin. In addition to oil reserves, Venezuela has sizeable natural gas reserves, although the development of natural gas lags significantly behind that of oil. However, in the wake of political and economic instability in the country, crude oil production has dramatically decreased, reaching a multi-decades low in mid-2018.
U.S. BEA - The U.S. current-account deficit increased to $124.1 billion (preliminary) in the first quarter of 2018 from $116.1 billion (revised) in the fourth quarter of 2017, according to statistics released by the Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA). The deficit was 2.5 percent of current-dollar gross domestic product (GDP) in the first quarter, up from 2.4 percent in the fourth quarter.
WNN - There are 126 operational power reactors in 14 EU Member States, providing more than one-quarter of the bloc's total electricity production. In its Communication on the Nuclear Illustrative Program (PINC) published last year, the European Commission expects nuclear to maintain its significant role in Europe's energy mix up to 2050. This would require investment of some EUR40-50 billion (USD46-58 billion) in nuclear LTO by 2050.
REUTERS - Benchmark Brent crude LCOc1 was up 50 cents at $75.58 a barrel by 0835 GMT. U.S. light crude CLc1 was 50 cents higher at $65.57.