PRICES: OIL FUTURES STABLE
Crude-oil futures moved in a narrow price range in Asian hours Friday with market participants suggesting that the weak oil prices appear to have largely stabilized.
On the New York Mercantile Exchange, light, sweet crude futures for delivery in November traded at $92.53 a barrel at 0513 GMT, unchanged in the Globex electronic session. November Brent crude on London's ICE Futures exchange fell $0.03 to $96.97 a barrel.
The U.S. and its allies continue to conduct airstrikes on Islamic State targets in Syria but their intensity may level off as the U.S.-led military campaign drags on, officials said.
Iran's cooperation with the West against Islamic State could ramp up if talks over its nuclear program are successful, its President Hasan Rouhani said at the United Nations meeting in New York on Thursday.
Meanwhile, an increase in Libyan oil production still weighs on prices.
But this increase is expected to be offset by strong West African crude flows out of the region to Asia, where oil refiners are ramping up crude purchases ahead of the peak winter season, Michael Wittner, head of oil research at Societe Generale said in a report.
He said oil market fundamentals are not bullish, but are also not getting any worse, so prices appear to be stabilizing.
"In addition, there is a fairly strong behavioural pattern of Chinese refiners buying on the dips to take advantage of price weakness, whether to process the crude, or use it to build strategic or commercial stocks," Mr. Wittner said.
Nymex reformulated gasoline blendstock for October--the benchmark gasoline contract--fell 122 points to $2.7058 a gallon, while October diesel traded at $2.7002, 44 points higher.
ICE gasoil for October changed hands at $813.50 a metric ton, down $0.25 from Thursday's settlement.
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THE LOCAL FRANCE - Angola and French oil giant Total formally launched a major new offshore oil project Saturday to aid the country's economy that plunged into crisis following oil price dips in 2014.
WNN - China's State Power Investment Corporation (SPIC) says it has signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) for "global cooperation" in nuclear energy with Westinghouse Electric Company of the USA.
WNN - Advanced Nuclear Technologies - otherwise known as small nuclear or small reactor technologies - encompass a wide range of nuclear reactor technologies under development, BEIS noted. "The common attributes that these technologies share is that they are smaller than conventional nuclear power station reactors and are designed so that much of the plant can be fabricated in a factory environment and transported to site, reducing construction risk and making them less capital-intensive," it said.
WNN - Poland and the USA have signed a Joint Declaration of Energy Security, which emphasises the expansion of their cooperation in a variety of areas, including civil nuclear energy. The document was signed in Warsaw yesterday by Polish Energy Minister Krzysztof Tchórzewski and US Secretary of Energy Rick Perry.