Oil up a notch as US crude oil stocks drop heavily

By A/S Global Risk Management.

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Updated on 21 Dec 2017 12:04 GMT

The crude oil market has been quiet news-wise during end of last week and start of this week. So yesterday all eyes were on the US oil inventory data. The report showed a large draw of 6.5 mbbl on crude which most likely drove the Brent price up to the mid 64s, where it currently trades as well. Furthermore, gasoline inventories saw a build of 1.2 mbbl, and distillates a build of 0.8 mbbl.

US production inched a bit higher last week despite a modest drop of 1 in the rig count. This could be a sign of growth in US production leveling out. But that is far from certain. US exports rose last week by a remarkable 750 kbpd to a level of 1860 kbpd.

Lately China, and Asia in general, have been importing a lot of US crude, and last week did not seem to be any different. Likely, the increased US export is an effect of the relatively wide spread between Brent and WTI. As we are seeing US refineries running quite high utilization rates in combination with 1000-2000 kbpd exports we could see more draws on US crude inventories. This trend is most likely an effect of the OPEC cuts and a strong global demand at the moment. If this trend is able to persist, it would give US producers an incentive to increase production.

Tonight, the weekly U.S. oil rig count from Baker Hughes is published and followed closely.

A/S Global Risk Management is a provider of customised hedging solutions for the management of price risk on fuel expenses. The company has offices in Denmark and Singapore. For further details about its risk management products and services, please call +45 88 38 00 00 or email hedging@global-riskmanagement.com.