Sunday, 21 October, 2018

Oil prices steady after Iranian exports fall further

Oil prices steady after Iranian exports fall further Saudi Arabia to supply about 4 million barrels of extra oil to India in November — sources
Priscilla Morrison | 10 October, 2018, 14:54

Oil prices held little changed on Tuesday, as more evidence emerged that crude exports from Iran are declining in the run-up to the reimposition of USA sanctions, while a hurricane moved across the Gulf of Mexico.

Brent crude futures rose $1.09 to settle at $85.00 a barrel, a 1.30 percent gain.

Indian refiners imported around 10 million barrels of Iranian oil in October, and its November shipments are expected to be lower.

The US benchmark West Texas Intermediate fell 54 cents, or 0.73 percent, to Dollars 73.80, while Brent, the global benchmark, was down 80 cents, or 0.95 percent, to USD 83.36 a barrel.

That's down from at least 2.5 million bpd in April, before President Donald Trump in May withdrew the USA from a 2015 nuclear deal with Iran and reimposed sanctions.

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Another factor easing those fears was a Friday Reuters report that cited an unnamed us government official as saying the Trump administration is considering waivers on its sanctions for countries that agree to reduce their imports of Iranian oil.

As reported, Indian Oil Corp will lift six million barrels of Iranian oil while Mangalore Refinery and Petrochemicals Ltd ships in three million barrels. According to CNBC, Pradhan said India may use rupees rather than dollars to buy the oil, in an attempt to skirt the sanctions.

Analysts said a weak trend in global market after the U.S. said it may grant waivers to sanctions against Iran's oil exports next month and as Saudi Arabia was said to be replacing any potential shortfall from Iran, weighed on crude futures here. The industry has been worrying that an entirely effective ban on Iranian oil exports would strain supplies.

Meanwhile, producers in the U.S. Gulf of Mexico on Tuesday cut oil production by about 40 percent as Hurricane Michael approached the Florida coast, the Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement (BSEE) said, citing reports from 27 companies.

If current forecasts prove accurate, the hurricane would largely miss major producing assets in the Gulf, analysts said, but any change of track could widen the impact. The American Petroleum Institute is due to release data on Wednesday, while the U.S. Energy Information Administration is due to publish on Thursday.

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