OIL PRICE: ABOVE $65 YET
REUTERS - Oil prices fell on Wednesday, pulled down by weaker sharemarkets after a key advocate for free trade in the U.S. government resigned, triggering concerns that Washington would go ahead with import tariffs and risk a trade war.
Soaring U.S. crude oil production and rising inventories were also weighing on crude prices, traders said.
Gary Cohn, economic adviser to U.S. President Donald Trump, seen as a bulwark against protectionist forces within the government, said on Tuesday he was resigning, triggering a more than 1 percent fall in S&P 500 futures in early Wednesday trade.
Crude oil futures followed suit.
Brent crude futures were at $65.37 per barrel at 0149 GMT, down 42 cents, or 0.6 percent from their previous close.
U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures were at $62.16 a barrel, down 44 cents, or 0.7 percent.
“The overhang from the Cohn resignation ... could see oil prices move lower during today’s session,” said Stephen Innes, head of trading for Asia/Pacific at futures brokerage OANDA in Singapore.
A voice for Wall Street in the White House, Cohn’s move to resign came after he lost a fight over Trump’s plans for hefty steel and aluminum import tariffs.
Major powers, including the European Union and China, have warned that such tariffs could lead to retaliatory action and trigger a global trade war, which could grind to a halt economic growth and, by extension, oil consumption.
Traders said oil prices were also weighed by a reported rise in U.S. crude oil inventories.
Crude inventories rose by 5.661 million barrels in the week to 426.880 million barrels, data from the American Petroleum Institute showed on Tuesday.
Official data by the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) is due to be published later on Wednesday.
Overall, oil supplies are ample despite efforts led by the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) and Russia to withhold output in order to prop up prices.
The EIA on Tuesday made its latest in a series of upward revisions for U.S. crude oil production C-OUT-T-EIA, which it now expects to rise by more than 120,000 barrels per day (bpd) to 11.17 million bpd by the fourth quarter of 2018.
That would take the United States past Russia to become the world’s biggest oil producer. The U.S. already passed top exporter Saudi Arabia late last year.
For 2019, the EIA forecast a crude production increase of 570,000 bpd to 11.27 million bpd.
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ГАЗПРОМ - Как отметил по итогам переговоров Алексей Миллер, «строительство газопровода „Сила Сибири“ идет с опережением графика, „Газпром“ начнет поставки газа в Китай раньше намеченного срока — уже с 1 декабря 2019 года».
U.S. EIA - In December 2018, U.S. shale and tight plays produced about 65 billion cubic feet per day (Bcf/d) of natural gas (70% of total U.S. dry gas production) and about 7 million barrels per day (b/d) of crude oil (60% of total U.S. oil production). A decade ago, in December 2008, shale gas and tight oil accounted for 16% of total U.S. gas production and about 12% of U.S. total crude oil production.
REUTERS - On Thursday, the regional price of crude was at a $1.10 a barrel premium to U.S. crude futures, the strongest in more than a year as companies including Parsley Energy, Pioneer Natural Resources, Goodrich Petroleum Corp have pared their exploration budgets, easing the constraints.
U.S. FRB - Industrial production decreased 0.6 percent in January after rising 0.1 percent in December.