Energy News

Jul 23 - Indonesia seeks Russian oil for the first time in years, sources say
Indonesian state-controlled refiner Pertamina has added Russian oil grades to its tender lists to buy September crude, three traders said on Monday. Pertamina has not purchased Russian oil for years, having taken a step back since the start of Russian-Ukraine military conflict in 2022, though Indonesia did not join Western sanctions against Russia.

Jul 23 - Oil tanker that fled collision site is detained in Malaysia
A tanker that fled the scene of a fiery Friday collision off Singapore entered the area of Malaysia's Bertam floating oil terminal on Monday after being tracked down and intercepted by Malaysian authorities, shipping data from LSEG and Kpler showed. The Sao Tome and Principe-flagged supertanker Ceres I had left the scene of the collision with the Singapore-flagged tanker Hafnia Nile about 55 km (35 miles) northeast of the Singaporean island of Pedra Branca without explanation. 

Jul 22 - Oil prices fall as investors take stock of Biden exit, rate cuts in focus (Reuters)- Oil prices fell on Monday after Joe Biden announced he would not seek a second term as U.S. president, while investors considered the possibility of U.S. interest rate cuts, potentially as soon as September.Brent crude futures fell 68 cents, or 0.82%, to $81.95 a barrel by 1327 GMT. U.S. West Texas Intermediate crude futures were down 69 cents at $79.44.Brent has remained relatively steady in the past month, hovering between $82 and $88 a barrel.- The U.S. Federal Reserve is due to review policy next on July 30-31, when investors expect it to maintain rates, though there have been signs of a possible cut in September."The risk of delaying rate cuts is tied to a contracting economy, which could potentially lead to a recession. This scenario signals bearish implications for oil demand and prices," Razan Hilal, market analyst at Forex.com, said in a note.- Higher interest rates boost borrowing costs for consumers and businesses, weighing on oil demand."If we get an indication of a soon rate cut, the Fed could be positive for risk sensitive assets like oil," said Giovanni Staunovo, an analyst at UBS.Meanwhile, news that President Biden decided on Sunday to abandon his re-election bid was not a major factor for oil markets, analysts said. He has endorsed Vice President Kamala Harris as the candidate who should face Republican Donald Trump in the November election.- Nuclear power provides a lot of power from a relatively small footprint for a very long time without any carbon emissions at all."We think the ability of the U.S. president to influence U.S. oil production is probably overrated," said Suvro Sarkar, energy team lead at DBS Bank, noting U.S. output reached record highs last year despite the Biden administration's moves to address climate change."If anything, a Trump presidency could influence higher demand for oil in the U.S., given his anti-EV (electric vehicle) stance," Sarkar added.

Jul 22 - China's first-half 2024 fuel oil imports slide 11% y/y
China's total fuel oil imports slipped 11% in the first half of 2024, data showed on Saturday, amid a backdrop of weak refining margins and poor fuel demand. The imports totalled 11.95 million metric tons, or about 75.88 million barrels, data from the General Administration of Customs showed.

Jul 22 - Oilfield services firms SLB, Halliburton post profit gains on global demand
Top U.S. oilfield service firms SLB and Halliburton posted higher quarterly profits on Friday helped by strong global demand, but warned of softer activity in North America for the second half of this year. Oilfield service providers have in recent quarters bet on growth overseas, as well as on deepwater projects, to offset weak demand in North America, which has seen a wave of mergers among producers and lukewarm natural gas demand.

Jul 19 - OPEC+ unlikely to change oil output policy at Aug 1 JMMC meeting, sources say
A mini OPEC+ ministerial meeting next month is unlikely to recommend changing the group's output policy, including a plan to start unwinding one layer of oil output cuts from October, three sources told Reuters. The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries and allies led by Russia, or OPEC+ as the group is known, will hold an online joint ministerial monitoring committee meeting (JMMC) on Aug. 1 to review the market.

Jul 19 - Exxon clash with Chevron hinges on change of control of Hess' Guyana asset, sources say
Exxon Mobil's legal bid to stop Chevron's proposed $53 billion acquisition of Hess rests on whether the transaction would involve a change of control of Hess' prize subsidiary in Guyana, according to people knowledgeable about the argument. The two top U.S. oil producers are in an arbitration battle over the world's largest oil discovery in almost two decades, in offshore Guyana.

Jul 18 - TotalEnergies sells Nigerian onshore oil assets to Chappal Energies for $860 mln
TotalEnergies has sold its minority share in a major Nigerian onshore oil joint venture to Mauritius-based Chappal Energies for $860 million, the French energy group said on Wednesday. CEO Patrick Pouyanne said in February that TotalEnergies was looking to exit its 10% stake in the Shell Petroleum Development Company of Nigeria Limited (SPDC), which has struggled with hundreds of oil spills as a result of theft, sabotage and operational issues that led to costly repairs and high-profile lawsuits.

Jul 18 - US crude stockpiles fall sharply, fuel builds, EIA says
U.S. crude oil stockpiles last week fell more than expected as strong refining activity continued despite Hurricane Beryl, while gasoline and distillate inventories rose, the Energy Information Administration (EIA) said on Wednesday. Crude inventories fell by 4.9 million barrels to 440.2 million barrels in the week ending July 12, the EIA said, compared with analysts' expectations in a Reuters poll for a 33,000-barrel draw.

Jul 17 - TotalEnergies says oil production to hit high end of Q2 guidance
French oil major TotalEnergies said on Tuesday its second-quarter hydrocarbon production levels will hit the top end of its guidance range, while pressure on refining margins will be partly alleviated by higher refinery utilisation. TotalEnergies quarterly earnings are due on July 25, and investors are closely watching the company and its peers as refining margins are dragged down by softening gasoline demand. London-listed BP earlier this month released a profit warning. 

Jul 17 - China's oil sector is weak, with rising crude inventories: Russell
China's crude oil market is unambiguously weak. Not only has the world's biggest importer seen a fall in arrivals in the first half of the year, it has also been boosting the volumes being added to stockpiles. 

Jul 16 - Russia ships surplus diesel to storage in Singapore and AfricaRussia has sent ultra-low sulphur diesel from its ports for storage in the regional hub of Singapore and in West Africa, traders and shipping data show, as ample supply has slowed demand. Since the full EU embargo on importing Russian oil products took effect in February 2023, Russia has diverted its diesel exports from Europe to Brazil, Turkey, and various parts of Africa and Asia.

Jul 16 - Yemen's Houthis target three vessels, including oil tanker, in Red, Mediterranean seasYemen's Houthis targeted three vessels, including an oil tanker, in the Red and Mediterranean seas with ballistic missiles, drones and booby-trapped boats, they said on Monday. Houthi military spokesperson Yahya Saree said the latest Houthi military operations were a response to the Israeli airstrike on the southern Gaza Strip city of Khan Younis on Saturday, an attack that killed at least 90 Palestinians and wounded 300 others, according to the Gaza Health Ministry.

Jul 15 - China's refinery output at 6-month low as weak fuel demand hurts
China's refinery output fell 3.7% in June from a year earlier, official data showed on Monday, down for a third month amid planned maintenance, while lower processing margins and lacklustre fuel demand pushed independent plants to cut output. Refiners processed 58.32 million metric tons of crude oil in June, data from the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) showed, equivalent to 14.19 million barrels per day (bpd), for the year's lowest levels so far.

Jul 15 - Oil trades in narrow range since 2022 on OPEC+, sanctions and demand worries
Brent crude oil has been trading in a tight range of $75-$90 a barrel since late 2022 as OPEC+ cuts keep a floor under prices while sizeable spare capacity, demand uncertainty and sanctions policy prevent the market breaking higher. After a series of gradual production increases that started in early 2021 which unwound historic cuts agreed during the coronavirus pandemic, OPEC+ announced new production cuts in October 2022 and since then has cut output further.

Jul 12 - IEA sees oil demand growth slowing as China's share ebbs
Global oil demand growth will slow to just under a million barrels per day (bpd) this year and next, the International Energy Agency (IEA) said, as Chinese consumption contracted in the second quarter due to economic problems. Global demand in the second quarter rose by 710,000 bpd year on year in its lowest quarterly increase in over a year, the IEA, which advises industrialised countries, said in its monthly oil report. 

Jul 12 - China June crude oil imports fall 11% on year, H1 imports down 2.3%
China's crude oil imports in June were down 11% from a high base a year earlier, official customs data showed on Friday, as independent refiners continued to curb production due to weak profit margins and as fuel demand remained tepid. June arrivals into the world's largest crude oil buyer were 46.45 million metric tons, or about 11.3 million barrels a day (bpd), data from the General Administration of Customs showed. 

Jul 11 - OPEC sticks to 2024 oil demand view, sees strong travel season OPEC stuck to its forecast for relatively strong growth in global oil demand in 2024 and next year, saying on Wednesday that resilient economic growth and air travel would support fuel use in the summer months.The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries, in a monthly report, said world oil demand would rise by 2.25 million barrels per day (bpd) in 2024 and by 1.85 million bpd in 2025. Both forecasts were unchanged from last month.
Jul 11 - Russian oil freight rates fall to lowest since 2022, sources say Freight rates to ship Russian oil have fallen this month towards parity with those for other global exporters for the first time since 2022 as more tankers were available despite Western sanctions and exports fell, three sources said on Wednesday. Freight rates to ship Russian oil soared to more than $20 million per voyage in 2022 after the West imposed sanctions and a $60 dollar price cap to try to limit Russian export revenues.

Jul 10 - Global oil market will be in supply deficit next year, EIA says
Global oil demand will outpace supply next year, the U.S. Energy Information Administration said on Tuesday, reversing a prior forecast for a surplus. The change came after OPEC and its allies, collectively known as OPEC+, extended most of their deep oil output cuts into next year at a meeting last month.

Jul 10 - Oil investors regain poise after post-OPEC swoon: Kemp
Portfolio investors had reverted to a broadly neutral position in petroleum last week after heavy selling triggered by the OPEC+ meeting at the start of June waned and buying took over. Hedge funds and other money managers purchased the equivalent of 56 million barrels in the six most important futures and options and contracts over the seven days ending on July 2.

Jul 09 - Saudi crude oil supply to China to rebound in August, regain market share
Saudi crude oil exports to China will rebound in August to at least 44 million barrels after deep price cuts by state energy firm Saudi Aramco supported demand, several trade sources said on Tuesday. August exports to China will rise for the first time in four months, from about 36 million barrels in July, the sources said.

Jul 09 - Record US summer heat, hurricanes could roil fuel prices as oil refiners sweat
A double whammy of record heat and hurricanes should test U.S. refiners' resilience in coming weeks, raising the risk of extremely volatile fuel prices in the middle of the peak travel season, analysts said. The Atlantic hurricane season from June through November is an annual threat for U.S. refineries.

Jul 08 - ‘Monsieur Afrique’ says gas is the big frontier exploration (Petroleum economist)
Panoro Energy’s senior advisor, Tim O’Hanlon, is upbeat on Gulf of Guinea upstream opportunities but highlights gas and LNG as next big growth story

Gas and LNG are set for a boom across Africa after previously taking a backseat to oil E&P activity, with the growth opportunities not just confined to the traditional east Africa spots, said Panoro Energy Senior Advisor Tim O’Hanlon in an exclusive interview with Petroleum Economist.

Known as ‘Monsieur Afrique’ for his multi-decade stint in the region, largely as the face of independent Tullow Oil, O’Hanlon has been supporting Panoro’s infrastructure-led exploration and appraisal offshore Gabon, leveraging existing infrastructure to accelerate development of low-cost barrels, and he highlights the whole Gulf of Guinea region as providing further opportunities despite its maturity.

Last November, the company announced an oil discovery at the Hibiscus South field on the offshore Dussafu Marin Permit, contributing 6–7m bl of recoverable reserves to Gabon’s resource base and representing the sixth discovery to be made on the block under Panoro’s participation.

Panoro and operator BW Energy started up production from the well just five months after discovery with production stabilised at 5,000–6,000b/d. There have been several positive stories since then, with three wells showing success, and initial evaluation indicates a significant uplift in reserves and the wells will be converted for production later in 2024. And a coup that removed the long-ruling Bongo dynasty in 2023 has not altered the investment environment. O’Hanlon also discussed the plethora of oil opportunities across the region and his involvement in Mozambique.

Jul 08 - Largest Texas ports close as Hurricane Beryl nears
The largest ports in Texas closed operations and vessel traffic on Sunday as Hurricane Beryl intensified as it approached the Texas coast near Houston. Beryl, which left a trail of destruction this week in the Caribbean, killing at least 11 people, was now a category 1 hurricane and may strengthen into a category 2 by landfall on Monday, the U.S. National Hurricane Center (NHC) said.

Jul 08 - North Sea oil producers urge Labour's Starmer for tax clarity
North Sea oil and gas producers urged Britain's incoming Prime Minister Keir Starmer to provide clarity on his election promise to increase tax on the sector, warning it could lead to a rapid decline in output and revenue. Starmer's Labour Party swept to power in a parliamentary election on Thursday, ending 14 years of Conservative government.

Jul 05 - Rosneft, Lukoil to cut oil exports from Black Sea's Novo, sources say
Russia's oil producers Rosneft and Lukoil will sharply cut oil exports from the Black Sea port of Novorossiisk in July, two sources familiar with a loading plan said, as the companies resumed operations at their refineries. Combined Novorossiisk oil loadings by Rosneft and Lukoil in July will fall by some 220,000 barrels per day (bpd) compared to last month, Reuters calculations based on market data showed.

Jul 05 - Saudi Arabia cuts August Arab Light crude price to Asia
Top oil exporter Saudi Arabia has cut the price for the flagship Arab light crude it sells to Asia in August to $1.80 a barrel above the Oman/Dubai average, Saudi Aramco said in a statement on Thursday. That is down 60 cents from the July price of Oman/Dubai plus $2.40 a barrel.

Jul 04 - US crude stocks, gasoline and distillate inventories fall – EIA
U.S. crude stocks plunged by much more than expected last week as refining and export activity increased, while gasoline and distillate inventories also fell, the Energy Information Administration said on Wednesday. Crude inventories fell by 12.2 million barrels to 448.5 million barrels in the week ending June 28, the EIA said, compared with analysts' expectations in a Reuters poll for a 680,000-barrel draw.

Jul 04 - Russian oil and gas revenue soars 41% in first half, data shows
Proceeds from oil and gas sales for Russia's federal budget rose by around 41% year on year in the first half of the year 5.698 trillion roubles ($65.12 billion), finance ministry data showed on Wednesday, due to rising oil prices and the weaker rouble. Oil and gas revenues have been the most important single source of cash for the Kremlin, accounting for around a third to a half of total federal budget proceedings for the last decade.

Jul 03 - OPEC oil output rises for second month in June, Reuters survey finds
OPEC oil output rose in June for a second consecutive month, a Reuters survey found on Tuesday, as higher supply from Nigeria and Iran offset the impact of voluntary supply cuts by other members and the wider OPEC+ alliance. The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries pumped 26.70 million barrels per day (bpd) last month, up 70,000 bpd from May, according to the survey based on shipping data and information from industry sources.

Jul 03 - Oil majors show interest in Galp's Namibia oil prospect, sources say
More than 12 oil companies, including Exxon, Shell and Brazil's national oil company, have expressed interest in buying a 40% stake in Galp Energia's major oil discovery offshore Namibia, sources close to the sale process said. Galp's Mopane discovery, which is estimated to hold at least 10 billion barrels of oil and gas equivalent, could be valued at over $10 billion, according to some estimates.

Jul 02 - Russia's Rosneft appoints new boss of flagship Vostok Oil project
Russia's Rosneft has appointed a new head of its flagship Vostok Oil project that is expected to produce up to 2 million barrels per day by 2030, mostly for export to Asia. Rosneft, Russia's biggest oil producer, named Andrei Lazeyev, former boss of Rosneft refining unit Bashneft, to lead Vostok Oil, according to the state registry.

Jul 02 - Nigeria's Dangote refinery boosts gasoil exports to W. African market
Nigeria's new Dangote oil refinery is increasing gasoil exports to West Africa, taking market share from European refiners, according to traders and shipping data. The $20 billion refinery, built by Africa's richest man Aliko Dangote on the outskirts of Lagos, is producing a lower grade of gasoil than expected as it awaits the restart of units needed to produce cleaner fuels, prompting the plant to seek buyers in neighbouring markets.

Jul 01 - US court may put off hearing on Citgo bids to September
A U.S. court has been asked to postpone to Sept. 19 a hearing to present the winning bid in an auction of shares in the parent of Venezuela-owned refiner Citgo Petroleum, according to a motion filed with the court on Friday. The Delaware court officer evaluating bids in a historic auction of shares in a parent of the seventh largest U.S. oil refiner requested the two-month delay to complete his evaluation and finish negotiating with bidders, the motion said. The motion has to be accepted by the judge to go into effect.

Jul 01 - Asia's first half crude oil imports slip, undermining bullish forecasts: Russell
Asia's imports of crude oil ticked lower in the first half of 2024 from the same period last year, defying expectations that the top-consuming continent would lead global demand growth. Asia imported 27.16 million barrels per day (bpd) of crude in the January to June period, down a modest 130,000 bpd from the 27.29 million bpd in the same period in 2023, according to data compiled by LSEG Oil Research.

Jun 28 - US Senate committee probes oil producers on price collusion with OPEC
The U.S. Senate budget committee on Thursday launched a probe of domestic oil producers about any efforts to illegally coordinate oil prices with the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries, in the latest effort by Democratic lawmakers to pressure energy companies. The producers the committee is probing include Exxon Mobil, Chevron, ConocoPhillips, and 14 others.

Jun 28 - Canada's Trans Mountain bets on last-minute oil shippers on high-cost pipeline

Canada's Trans Mountain oil pipeline will rely heavily on last-minute shippers to turn a profit, the corporation's financial projections show, clouding Ottawa's efforts to sell the pipeline now that its C$34.2 billion expansion is finished after years of delays. Documents filed by Trans Mountain as part of a regulatory dispute over its tolls show it could take up to eight years to make money unless the pipeline fills thousands of barrels a day of uncommitted shipping space.

Jun 28 - Global oil benchmark resolves its existential crisis (Petroleum Economist)
The addition of US crude to the world’s top oil benchmark has finally solved its North Sea conundrum and laid down a marker for the future

Dated Brent, used to price at least two-thirds of global crude, has gone from evolution to revolution. Just over one year ago, oil-price publisher Platts went from adding other local North Sea crude streams into the benchmark to the relative unknown of adding WTI Midland. With seemingly flawless logic, the market’s support and a leap of faith, the shift opened up Brent to truly live up to its name as a global oil-price barometer.

The seismic shift was necessary. The British and Norwegian grades underpinning the contract were dwindling. Brent, Forties, Oseberg and Troll had dropped to below 700,000b/d in the middle of 2023 from 850,000b/d in December 2020 and with that fall fewer bids and offers and a lower level of market activity. The benchmark is looked to for physical and futures prices not only for oil but for gas markets around the world too.

The move also solves Brent’s longstanding riddle: how can Brent be a bellwether for the overall health of the oil market and the global economy, when it is rooted just in Europe? In the past, the response was always based around the fact that it is a marker for light sweet premium crude.
“The unparalleled volume and liquidity seen in the Platts Market-on-Close price assessment process show the deep market acceptance of WTI Midland’s addition to the Brent complex” Hanley, S&P Global Commodity Insights

But by including WTI Midland, which is produced in the West Texas shale patch, that philosophical question is moot. Moreover, the change bolsters the light sweet stream rather than the ugly alternative: complicated mechanisms to adjust for differences in crude quality as was done with the heavier, sourer and more acidic Troll.

Indeed, S&P Global Commodity Insights, aka Platts, did consider the Norwegian Johan Sverdrup crude grade as the next step, but the quality differences at such sizeable extra volumes was a bridge too far.  Meanwhile, WTI Midland has characteristics close to crude in the Brent basket and also has a high number of trades, with 800,000b/d barrels being shipped to Europe, especially after Russia’s invasion of Ukraine pushed Urals towards India and China.

               GRADES DEFINING DATED BRENT
               Brent     Forties Oseberg  Ekofisk     Troll     WTI Midland
Apr 23     40.2%    31.8%    11.3%     2.5%   22.6%     0.0%
May 23     3.3%     57.2%     0.0%     0.0%     0.0%     40.7%
Jun 23      9.4%       1.9%     0.0%     0.0%     0.0%     88.7%
Jul 23       4.0%     27.3%     3.0%     0.0%     0.0%     65.7%
Aug 23     6.8%     68.4%     0.0%     0.0%     0.0%     27.9%
Sep 23     0.0%     65.5%     0.0%     0.0%     0.0%     34.5%
Oct 23      2.1%     24.0%     0.0%     0.0%     0.0%     73.9%
Nov 23     0.0%       6.9%     0.0%     11.2%    0.0%     81.9%
Dec 23     1.7%     32.6%     0.0%     13.2%    0.0%     52.5%
Jan 24      0.0%     70.5%     0.0%     2.1%     0.0%     27.4%
Feb 24      0.0%     17.5%     0.0%     5.0%     0.0%     82.0%
Mar 24      7.7%     37.1%     0.5%     1.5%     0.5%     53.4%
Apr 24     11.0%     17.0%     0.5%     11%     0.0%     59.0%
May 24      0.0%     76.0%     0.0%     0.0%     0.0%     24.0%

Jun 27 - US crude, gasoline stockpiles rise on weaker demand, distillates fall (EIA)

U.S. crude and gasoline inventories rose as demand softened, while distillate stockpiles fell last week, the Energy Information Administration said on Wednesday. Crude inventories rose by 3.6 million barrels to 460.7 million barrels, the EIA said, compared with analysts' expectations in a Reuters poll for a 2.9-million-barrel draw.

Jun 27 - U.S. crude imports touch two-year high despite lukewarm demand (Kpler)U.S. crude oil imports last month rose to a nearly two-year high as refiners scooped up heavy crudes from Canada and Latin America to process into fuels for summer driving season. Imports of crude oil rose to 3.1 million barrels per day (bpd) in May, the highest since July 2022, data from ship tracking service Kpler showed. Imports so far this month have remained strong, at around 2.9 million bpd to date.

Jun 26 - Russian oil and gas revenues set to rise by 50% y/y in June (Reuters)
Russia's oil and gas revenue in June is set to rise by more than 50% year on year to $9.4 billion, Reuters calculations showed, after a decrease in subsidies to refineries and reflecting the Russian economy's ability to limit the impact of sanctions. These revenues have been the most important single source of cash for the Kremlin, accounting for around a third to a half of total federal budget proceedings for the last decade.

Jun 26 - Venezuela resorts to dark fleet to supply oil to ally Cuba

Venezuela's state oil company PDVSA has begun using tankers that navigate off radar to supply its closest political ally, Cuba, as a fleet of state-owned vessels that have historically covered the route dwindles, according to documents and ship monitoring services. Cuba and its main oil supplier, Venezuela, for over a decade had exclusively used their own tankers to navigate between the two countries.

Jun 25 - Mexico's new Pemex refinery still needs important work, is far from ready, sources say
Mexican state energy company Pemex is unlikely to produce any commercially viable motor fuels at its new Olmeca refinery before the end of the year, five sources said, despite pressure that it should be ready before the outgoing president's term ends. President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador, a resource nationalist, inaugurated the 340,000-barrel-per-day refinery in July 2022 in his home state Tabasco, billing it as crucial to energy self-sufficiency for Mexico.

Jun 25 - Covestro opens books to ADNOC over $12.5 bln takeover offer
Germany's Covestro said on Monday it was stepping up talks with ADNOC after the Emirati energy company made an improved 11.7 billion euro ($12.5 billion) takeover bid following more than a year of pursuing the chemicals firm. Covestro, which makes plastics and chemicals for construction and engineering, said it was opening its books to ADNOC and believed the two sides could "generally reach a common understanding regarding core aspects of a possible transaction including support for Covestro's further growth strategy".

Jun 24 - Trafigura charters supertanker to load gasoil from Mideast
Global commodities trader Trafigura loaded diesel onto a supertanker in the Middle East this week, taking advantage of lower freight rates for crude tankers to send more fuel to the West, according to shipping data and several trade sources. The shipment marks the first VLCC to move diesel in bulk from the Middle East to the West in nearly a year, Kpler data showed, and comes after costs of shipping fuel from Asia to the West jumped.

Jun 24 - U.S. manufacturing output has flat-lined, dampening diesel use: Kemp
U.S. manufacturing production has barely increased since before the pandemic, which explains why diesel consumption remains anaemic and has not rebounded in line with expectations at the start of the year. Production increased by a faster-than-expected 0.9% in May after seasonal adjustments, but that followed back-to-back declines of 0.4% in April and 0.1% in March, according to estimates compiled by the Federal Reserve.

Jun 21 - Senegal starts crude production (The Petroleum Economist)

- This will be a transformative year for the West African nation, as first LNG is also expected before the end of 2024. Senegal has started producing crude for the first time, as Australia’s Woodside has achieved first oil from its offshore Sangomar development.

- Sangomar Phase 1 is a deepwater project based around an FPSO facility moored around 100km offshore. The FPSO’s nameplate production capacity is 100,000b/d, with up to 1.3m bl of storage, and the development’s “subsea infrastructure... is designed to allow subsequent development phasesm” Woodside stated.

- The ASX-listed company operates Sangomar with an 82% stake, with the remaining 18% held by Senegal’s NOC, Petrosen. Drilling is ongoing, and “Woodside expects to continue commissioning activities and safely ramping up production through 2024”, the firm said in a statement. Phase 1’s total cost estimate “remains within the provided range of $4.9–$5.2b”, Woodside continued.

- Sangomar’s crude has medium sour qualities with an API of around 31 and 1% sulphur content.
“Woodside expects the crude to be mainly processed by refineries in Europe and Asia,” the company told Petroleum Economist.
“Woodside expects to continue commissioning activities and safely ramping up production through 2024”

- Meg O’Neill, the Australian company’s CEO, welcomed the first oil, saying that it was “a historic day for Senegal and Woodside”, as well as being “a key milestone” for the project. “First oil from the Sangomar field marks a new era not only for our country's industry and economy, but most importantly for our people,” said Thierno Ly, Petrosen general manager.

- Senegalese President Bassirou Diomaye Diakhar Faye—who was sworn into office in early April—told his council of ministers that first oil “is a historic moment and an important step which has just been taken by our country in its quest for energy sovereignty”. The new president also announced an upcoming session of the country’s Strategic Orientation Committee for Oil and Gas (COSPETROGAZ), “whose composition will be revised”. Faye stated that the goal of the COSPETROGAZ meeting would "be to update the national strategy for the development and exploitation of oil and gas resources, while ensuring the proper distribution and supervision of the management of revenues from the exploitation of hydrocarbons”.

Jun 21 - US crude and fuel stockpiles fall last week as exports rise - EIA said
U.S. crude oil, gasoline and distillate inventories fell last week, the Energy Information Administration said on Thursday as crude exports rose. Crude inventories fell by 2.5 million barrels in the week ending June 14 to 457.1 million barrels, the EIA said, compared with analysts' expectations in a Reuters poll for a 2.2 million-barrel draw.

Jun 21 - Environmental activists win landmark ruling over UK oil well plan
Planning authorities should have considered the impact of climate-warming emissions in approving an oil well near Gatwick Airport, the UK's highest court said on Thursday, a ruling activists say could profoundly impact new fossil fuel projects in Britain. Environmental campaigners had argued that planning permission to retain and expand the oil well site near London's Gatwick was flawed because it had not considered the impact of greenhouse gas emissions from the use of the oil.

Jun 20 - Fossil fuel use, emissions hit records in 2023, report says
Global fossil fuel consumption and energy emissions hit all-time highs in 2023, even as fossil fuels' share of the global energy mix decreased slightly on the year, the industry's Statistical Review of World Energy report said. Growing demand for fossil fuel despite the scaling up of renewables could be a sticking point for the transition to lower carbon energy as global temperature increases reach 1.5C, the threshold beyond which scientists say impacts such as temperature rise, drought and flooding will become more extreme.

Jun 20 - Russian oil exports from western ports seen lower in July, traders say
Russia's oil exports from its western ports in July are expected to decline from June amid higher refinery runs and Moscow's pledge to stick to OPEC+ output cuts, two traders said. Russian oil exports from Baltic ports Primorsk and Ust-Luga as well as the Black Sea port of Novorossiisk, which mostly load the Urals oil grade, tend to be volatile as companies adjust exports depending on refinery runs and available supply.

Jun 19 - Oil and corn groups team up against Biden's tailpipe emissions rules
The top U.S. oil and corn industry lobby groups said on Tuesday they were suing President Joe Biden's administration over its plans to slash planet-warming tailpipe emissions from cars and trucks, arguing the regulations will cause economic harm. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency this spring finalized new rules for models of semi-trucks, buses and other heavy-duty vehicles released from 2027 to 2032 in a bid to cut 1 billion tons of greenhouse gas emissions through 2055.

Jun 19 - Canada oil and gas emissions cap likely to curtail production, report says
Canada's proposed oil and gas emissions cap will prompt companies to cut production rather than invest in costly carbon capture and storage technology, according to a report by consultancy Deloitte and released by the Alberta government on Tuesday. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau's Liberal government is developing regulations to force Canada's highest-polluting sector to cut emissions to 137 million metric tons, 37% below 2022 levels, by 2030.

Jun 18 - Saudi Arabia's crude exports slip from nine-month high in April
Saudi Arabia's crude oil exports fell in April, slipping from their highest in nine months hit in the previous month, data from the Joint Organizations Data Initiative showed on Monday. OPEC+, which groups the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries and allies including Russia, can pause or reverse oil production increases if the market weakens, the Saudi energy minister said this month.

Jun 18 - Global gasoline refining margins slump on slow summer driving season
Oil refiners are making less money selling their gasoline as demand during the peak summer driving season has fallen short of what they expected when many of them boosted production. Softness in gasoline markets have upended years of record profits on selling transportation fuels.

Jun 17 - China refinery output slips 1.8% y/y on maintenance, falling profit margins
China's oil refinery output slipped 1.8% from year-ago levels in May, statistics bureau data showed, as refiners undertook planned maintenance overhauls and processing margins were pressured by rising crude costs. Refiners processed 60.52 million metric tons of crude oil in May, according to data from the National Bureau of Statistics, equivalent to 14.25 million barrels per day.

Jun 17 - US oil refining capacity rises for second year in a row
U.S. crude oil refining capacity rose 1.5% to 18.38 million barrels per day this year, a government report showed on Friday as a major new expansion in Texas boosted capacity. The Energy Information Administration said the figures indicate capacity online as of Jan. 1, which reflected for the first time the startup last year of an about 250,000 bpd expansion to Exxon Mobil's Beaumont, Texas, refinery.

Jun 14 - OPEC sees no peak oil demand long term, secretary general says
OPEC does not see a peak in oil demand in its long-term forecast and expects demand to grow to 116 million barrels a day by 2045, and may be higher, the secretary general said on Thursday. The International Energy Agency said in a report on Wednesday it sees oil demand peaking by 2029, levelling off at around 106 million barrels per day  towards the end of the decade.

Jun 14 - US refining margins slump as fuel stocks climb: Kemp
U.S. oil refineries have been processing petroleum at the fastest rate for the time of year since before the pandemic, but rising fuel inventories have begun to weigh on crack spreads and likely signal a slowdown ahead. Refineries processed 17.5 million barrels per day of crude and other feedstocks over the week ending on June 7, the fastest seasonal rate since 2018, according to data from the U.S. Energy Information Administration.

Jun 13 - Strong imports drive surprise crude stock build, fuel inventories also rise, EIA says
U.S. crude stockpiles rose unexpectedly last week, driven largely by a jump in imports, while fuel inventories also increased, the Energy Information Administration said on Wednesday. Crude inventories rose by 3.7 million barrels to 459.7 million barrels in the week ended June 7, the EIA said, compared with analysts' expectations in a Reuters poll for a 1 million-barrel draw.

Jun 13 - Oil demand set to peak by 2029, major supply glut looms, IEA says
Global oil demand will peak by 2029 and begin to contract the following year while the U.S. and other non-OPEC countries add to supply, the International Energy Agency said on Wednesday, resulting in a major surplus this decade. The IEA, which advises industrialised countries, moved forward the date for peak oil demand after having said in October that it would occur by 2030.

Jun 12 - EIA forecasts larger records for 2024 US oil output, global demand
U.S. oil output and global oil demand will likely post bigger records this year than previously expected, the U.S. Energy Information Administration said on Tuesday. The agency now expects U.S. oil output to grow by around 310,000 barrels per day to 13.24 million bpd this year, about 40,000 bpd higher than its previous forecast in May.

Jun 12 - OPEC sticks to 2024 oil demand growth forecast but trims Q1 view
OPEC on Tuesday stuck to its forecast for relatively strong growth in global oil demand in 2024, despite lower-than-expected use in the first quarter, saying travel and tourism would support consumption in the second half of the year. The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries, in a monthly report, said world oil demand will rise by 2.25 million barrels per day in 2024 and by 1.85 million bpd in 2025.

Jun 11 - Saudi crude oil exports to China to fall for 3rd straight month in July, sources say
Saudi crude oil exports to China will fall in July for a third straight month to about 36 million barrels amid plant maintenance and as some refiners opted for other sources of cheaper oil, several trade sources said. July exports are down from about 39 million barrels in June, possibly the lowest levels for the year, the sources said.

Jun 11 - OPEC⁺ surprise triggered record hedge fund oil sales: Kemp
Portfolio investors sold record volumes of petroleum last week after OPEC⁺ surprised the market by announcing plans to increase production starting from the fourth quarter of 2024. Hedge funds and other money managers sold the equivalent of 194 million barrels in the six most important futures and options contracts over the seven days ending on June 4.

Jun 10 - Iraq oil minister reports progress in talks with Kurdish officials on northern exports
Iraq's Oil Minister Hayan Abdel-Ghani said there has been progress in talks with Kurdistan region officials and representatives of international companies operating there for a deal to resume oil exports via a pipeline to the Turkish port of Ceyhan.

Jun 10 - China's commodity imports are soft, even those that look strong: Russell
China's imports of major commodities were either openly weak in May, such as the decline in crude oil, or those showing apparent signs of strength were deceptive and largely driven by factors other than rising consumption.

Jun 07 - Saudi says OPEC+ can pause or reverse oil output boost, criticises Goldman Sachs
OPEC+ can pause or reverse oil production increases if the market weakens, the Saudi energy minister said on Thursday, adding he disagreed with the bearish view of U.S. bank Goldman Sachs of OPEC+'s deal on Sunday. Goldman Sachs declined to comment.

Jun 07 - China's May crude oil imports fall 8.7% on weak refining margins
China's crude oil imports fell 8.7% from a year earlier, official data showed, as refiners scaled back purchases amid heavy plant overhauls and subdued profit margins. May imports by the world's largest crude oil buyer amounted to 46.97 million metric tons, or about 11.06 million barrels a day, data from the General Administration of Customs showed. 

Jun 07 - Exit wounds ( Petroleum Economist - Paul Hickin )The messy and unclear outcomes from geopolitical disruptions, sanctions, price caps and market management are as stark as ever
 
The death of Iran’s leader had all and sundry declare the most tired of energy market cliches of recent times: risk premium! But it seems it will take more than a terrible accident to move this oil market out of its apparent lethargy, if you are a trader, or alleged ‘Goldilocks’ price, if you are a producer or consumer. Neither too hot, nor too cold, but just about right. 
In some respects, OPEC+ is the calm in the geopolitical storm, having steadied an oil market in turbulent times. While the producers’ group may have rolled over its production cuts and be comfortable with price stability, these reductions—many voluntary and layered on top of the formal agreement—have been longer and deeper than it would have liked, and how much these prices incentivise non-OPEC producers and keep inflationary pressures in play are conundrums still to be solved. 
And behind the scenes in the oil industry the complexities are even greater. Sanctions and political discord have led to a range of unintended outcomes, including changing flows and market signals. Iran is finding ways to export its oil amid a conflicted approach by the US in an election year. Iraq faces a bumpy path ahead given recent drone strikes. And there is the big question of ‘Ameripec’, where inquiries are being made into US oil majors and supposed market management actions that are in a similar vein to those of OPEC+. 
Gas giant Gazprom is counting the cost of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. Indeed, Russia itself is caught between Europe’s disdain for its aggression and its distaste for its oil and gas and China’s swagger, given that the Asian powerhouse now holds the upper hand in its relationship. 
Meanwhile, elsewhere in this issue we dive deeper into the less-explored region of Central Asia: Russia’s neighbours Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan are showing interesting developments and potentially some silver linings from one of the world’s biggest oil and gas producers. 
In a recent webinar celebrating 90 years of Petroleum Economist, Jeff Currie, of Carlyle and former Goldman Sachs head of commodity research, called the recent changes to energy markets “seismic”, and said the effects of altered oil flows will reverberate further on geoeconomics and politics. 
The energy map has not just been re-oriented. The sanctions, new alignments and changed buying and selling behaviour will leave their sutures ready to burst at any time. The era of energy complacency is over, and a new path must be trodden: one that has a newfound appreciation for oil and gas and one that is wide awake over the costly journey energy is on. For now, many are working out new opportunities and others are still licking their wounds.

Jun 06 - US crude, fuel stockpiles rise as refining ramps up, EIA says
U.S. crude oil stockpiles rose unexpectedly last week, while gasoline and distillate inventories also increased as refining ramped up and demand fell despite the kick-off of the summer driving season, the Energy Information Administration said on Wednesday. Crude inventories rose by 1.2 million barrels to 455.9 million barrels in the week ended May 31, the EIA said, compared with analysts' expectations in a Reuters poll for a 2.3 million-barrel draw.

Jun 06 - Saudi Arabia cuts July Arab Light crude oil OSP to Asia
Saudi Arabia set its flagship Arab Light crude oil official selling price to Asia at plus $2.40 versus Oman/Dubai average for July, a document seen by Reuters showed on Wednesday. That marks a 50 cent per barrel cut from the June OSP, the first cut in five months and towards the lower end of market expectations according to a Reuters survey.

Jun 05 - US House lawmakers seek antitrust probe of OPEC and oil companies
A group of Democratic U.S. House lawmakers asked the Justice Department on Tuesday to probe allegations of antitrust behavior among U.S. oil producers and OPEC and said the two largest U.S oil companies have been conspiring to keep fuel prices high. Nine House of Representatives Democrats, in a letter to Attorney General Merrick Garland, cited a complaint by the Federal Trade Commission in May alleging the former CEO of Pioneer Resources engaged in an "outrageous scheme... to coordinate pricing between U.S. oil companies and foreign producers." 

Jun 05 - Crude oil tanker market grappling with ageing fleet, says Trafigura
The crude oil tanker market is grappling with an ageing fleet of vessels which need to be replaced, posing a challenge as shipyards are focused on building other types of ships, a top executive with commodity trader Trafigura said on Tuesday. The crude tanker market, including VLCC supertankers, has remained strong in recent months partly due to longer voyages made by some vessels sailing via southern Africa amid Red Sea attacks by the Houthis, which has tightened availability.

Jun 04 - Venezuela's May oil exports rise 30% during US wind-down period
Venezuela's oil exports recovered in May from a low figure the previous month as state oil company PDVSA's customers rushed to take cargoes ahead of the resumption of U.S. sanctions on the South American country. The U.S. Treasury Department in April did not renew a broad license that had allowed Venezuela to freely export its oil, but gave companies until the end of May to complete transactions, including crude and fuel sales.  

Jun 04 - US oil futures draw renewed interest from hedge funds: Kemp
Portfolio investors purchased petroleum contracts for the first time in seven weeks as traders squared up short positions ahead of a meeting of OPEC⁺ ministers to decide production policy in the second half of 2024. Hedge funds and other money managers purchased the equivalent of 21 million barrels in the six most important futures and options contracts over the seven days ending on May 28.

Jun 03 - OPEC+ extends deep oil production cuts into 2025
OPEC+ agreed on Sunday to extend most of its deep oil output cuts well into 2025 as the group seeks to shore up the market amid tepid demand growth, high interest rates and rising rival U.S. production. Brent crude oil prices have been trading near $80 per barrel in recent days, below what many OPEC+ members need to balance their budgets.  

Jun 03 - Investors flock to Aramco share sale that could raise $13 bln
Saudi Arabia's sale of shares in oil giant Aramco drew more demand than the stock on offer within hours of kicking off on Sunday, a deal that could raise up to $13.1 billion in a major test of international appetite for the kingdom's assets. The banks on the deal will take institutional orders through Thursday and will price the shares the following day, with trading expected to start next Sunday on Riyadh's Saudi Exchange.

May 31 - Saudi Arabia sets up new Aramco share sale that could raise $13.1 billion
Saudi Arabia's government on Thursday filed papers to sell a new stake in state oil giant Aramco that could raise as much as $13.1 billion, a landmark deal to help fund Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman's plan to diversify the economy. In the main part of the deal, Saudi Arabia could raise $12 billion by offering about 1.545 billion Aramco shares, equivalent to about 0.64% of the company, if it prices the sale at the top end of a 26.7 to 29 riyals range, according to Aramco's filing on Riyadh's Saudi Exchange.  

May 31 - OPEC+ working on complex production cut deal for 2024-2025, sources say
OPEC+ is working on a complex deal to be agreed at its meeting on Sunday that will allow the group to extend some of its deep oil production cuts into 2025, three sources familiar with OPEC+ discussions said on Thursday. OPEC+ has made a series of cuts since late 2022 amid rising output from the United States and other non-members, and worries over demand as major economies grapple with high interest rates. 

May 30 - Oil storage rise supports case for keeping OPEC+ cuts, sources sayRising global oil inventories through April due to soft fuel demand may strengthen the case for OPEC+ producers to keep supply cuts in place when they meet on June 2, OPEC+ delegates and analysts say. OPEC+ - the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) and allies led by Russia - meets on Sunday to discuss supply policy and whether to extend voluntary cuts.

May 30 - ConocoPhillips to buy Marathon Oil in $22.5 bln deal in latest energy mergerTop U.S. independent oil and gas producer ConocoPhillips on Wednesday agreed to buy Marathon Oil for $22.5 billion, the latest in a series of mega-deals in the energy industry. The U.S. oil and gas industry has been riding a consolidation wave over the last two years as companies look to bolster reserves and create economies of scale.

May 29 - Hess shareholders sign off on $53 billion sale to Chevron
Hess shareholders on Tuesday approved the proposed $53 billion merger with Chevron that paves the way for the No. 2 U.S. oil company to gain a prize asset and a foothold in rival Exxon Mobil's massive Guyana discoveries. The approval clears one hurdle, but the deal still requires regulatory approval and must face a lengthy arbitration battle with Exxon and CNOOC, Hess' partners in Guyana.

May 29 - India's Reliance to buy Russian oil in roubles, sources say
India's Reliance Industries, operator of the world's biggest refining complex, has signed a one-year deal with Russia's Rosneft to buy at least 3 million barrels of oil a month in roubles, four sources aware of the matter told Reuters. The shift to rouble payments follows Russian President Vladimir Putin's push for Moscow and its trading partners to find alternatives to the Western financial system to facilitate trade despite U.S. and European sanctions.

May 28 - Goldman Sachs expects oil demand to keep growing until 2034
Goldman Sachs raised its global oil demand forecast for 2030 on Monday and expects consumption to peak by 2034 on a potential slowdown in electric vehicle adoption, keeping refineries running at higher-than-average rates till the end of this decade. The research division of the bank raised its 2030 crude oil demand forecast to 108.5 million barrels per day (bpd) from 106 million bpd, and expects demand to peak at 110 million bpd in 2034, followed by a long plateau till 2040, analysts led by Nikhil Bhandari said in a report.

May 28 - Russia's ESPO sea-borne oil exports hit record-high in May, Kommersant reports
Russia's ESPO oil blend exports from the Pacific port of Kozmino have increased by 5% so far in May from April's average to a record-high of 960,000 barrels per day (bpd), Kommersant daily reported on Monday citing Kpler ship-tracking data. It said that the data covers supplies over May 1-24. The previous record was set in February when the entire export of more than 914,000 bpd was shipped to China, which has become one of Russia's main oil buyers along with India.

May 27 - Saudi Arabia plans Aramco share sale as soon as June, sources say
Saudi Arabia is planning a multi-billion-dollar share sale in energy giant Aramco as soon as June in what would be one of the region's biggest stock deals, two people familiar with the matter said. The offering could raise around $10 billion, one of the people said. The preparations are ongoing and the details could still change, the sources said, who were speaking on condition of anonymity because the matter is private.

May 27 - Iran plans to raise oil output to 4 mln barrels per day – Tasnim
Iran has approved a plan to raise its oil output to four million barrels per day, the country's Tasnim news agency said on Sunday, without providing a time frame. "An economic council headed by Iran's interim president Mohammad Mokhber has approved a plan to raise the country's oil output from 3.6 million barrels per day to 4 million barrels per day," Tasnim added.

May 24 - Russia finds it challenging to keep the lid on oil output, analysts, sources say
Russia, in a rare admission of oil overproduction, said overnight that it exceeded its OPEC+ production quota in April for "technical reasons", a surprise move that analysts and industry sources say shows Moscow faces challenges in curbing output. Russia, Saudi Arabia, as well as some other members of OPEC+ group of leading oil producers, have pledged extra oil output cuts on top of what had already been agreed, in order to support the market for oil, a key generator of revenues for their budgets.

May 24 - India, Egypt top destinations for Russian seaborne fuel oil, VGO exports in April, LSEG data shows
India and Egypt were the top destinations for Russian seaborne fuel oil and vacuum gasoil (VGO) exports in April, traders said and LSEG data showed. In total, Russian fuel oil and VGO seaborne exports fell in April by 10% month-on-month to about 3.32 million tons, as refining capacity idled due to maintenance, technical outages and drone attacks, increased last month by 13.6% from March, Reuters calculations showed.

May 23 - US crude stockpiles rise unexpectedly, gasoline draws down as demand grows - EIA
U.S. crude oil inventories rose unexpectedly last week due to a big adjustment for unaccounted barrels, while gasoline stockpiles fell as demand grew ahead of the summer driving season, the Energy Information Administration said on Wednesday. Crude inventories rose by 1.8 million barrels to 458.8 million barrels in the week ending May 17, the EIA said, compared with analysts' expectations in a Reuters poll for a 2.5 million-barrel draw.

May 23 - US lawmakers urge Justice Department to probe climate deception by Big Oil
U.S. lawmakers behind a congressional probe of major oil companies on Wednesday called on the Justice Department to investigate whether the industry deceived the public about fossil fuels' impact on climate change. Two Democrats, Senator Sheldon Whitehouse and Representative Jamie Raskin, outlined the findings of a nearly three-year investigation into Big Oil and urged the agency to take action in a letter to U.S. Attorney General Merrick Garland.

May 22 - Shell shareholders reject investor climate resolution
Shell shareholders on Tuesday overwhelmingly rejected a climate resolution filed by an activist group following a meeting punctuated by protests. In March, Shell weakened a 2030 carbon reduction target, citing expectations for strong gas demand and uncertainty in the energy transition, while focusing on more profitable operations, mainly in oil and gas.

May 22 - India's Russian oil imports rise to nine-month high in April
India's Russian oil imports rose a nine-month high in April after shipments on non-sanctioned tankers operated by Russia's largest shipping company Sovcomflot resumed, tanker data obtained from shipping and trade sources showed. Refiners in India briefly stopped importing Russian oil in tankers belonging to Sovcomflot after the company's ships, along with its 14 tankers, were designated by Washington in February as being in breach of Western sanctions.

May 21 - Global oil markets weaken as sluggish demand leaves overhang
Global physical crude oil markets are weakening because of soft refinery demand and ample supply, traders and analysts told Reuters, in a move that could spell further weakness for benchmark crude futures. The weakness indicates high interest rates and inflation are depressing consumer and industrial demand, especially in Europe, at a time when supply is rising from non-OPEC producers such as the United States.

May 21 - US refiners reward shareholders with big returns despite softer Q1 profits
Major U.S. fuel makers returned billions in capital to shareholders in the first quarter and boosted share repurchase programs, even as refining margins softened from recent records and utilization rates fell. Three of the biggest U.S. independent oil refiners - Marathon Petroleum, Phillips 66, and Valero Energy - earned combined adjusted profits of $2.93 billion and returned $5.5 billion to shareholders through stock repurchases and dividends in the first quarter, according to Reuters calculations.

May 20 - China's April gasoline exports fall to lowest level since July 2015 on recovering domestic demand
China's gasoline exports in April fell to the lowest level since July 2015, customs data and Reuters records showed on Saturday, as domestic travel and fuel use increased in the recovering economy. April exports of gasoline stood at 400,000 million metric tons, down 50.8% from a year earlier, General Administration of Customs data showed on Saturday, and 65% below March's 1.15 million tons. 

May 20 - Russia is China's top oil supplier for a 12th month in April
Russia was China's top oil supplier in April for a 12th month, with volumes rising 30% from a year earlier, official data showed, as refiners continued to cash in discounted shipments, while supplies from Saudi Arabia fell a quarter on higher prices. China's crude oil imports from Russia, which include supplies sent via pipelines and the sea, were 9.26 million metric tons last month, or 2.25 million barrels per day (bpd), according to data from the General Administration of Customs.

May 17 - China annual oil refinery output falls for first time in 20 months amid maintenance
China's refinery output fell 3.3% in April from a year earlier, the first annual decline in 20 months, as large refiners carried out regular maintenance and small independent plants curbed production due to thin profit margins. Refinery throughput was 58.79 million metric tons, according to data from the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) on Friday, equivalent to 14.3 million bpd.

May 17 - Chevron prepares for North Sea exit after more than 55 years

Chevron said it is set to launch the sale of its remaining UK North Sea oil and gas assets, in a move that would mark the U.S. energy giant's exit from the ageing basin after more than 55 years. The planned divestment, confirmed to Reuters on Thursday, comes as Chevron prepares for the $53 billion acquisition of rival Hess which it previously said will include $10 billion to $15 billion in asset sales around the world.

May 16 - IEA trims 2024 oil demand growth forecast, widens gap with OPEC

The International Energy Agency (IEA) on Wednesday trimmed its forecast for 2024 oil demand growth, widening the gap with producer group OPEC in terms of expectations for this year's global demand outlook. The divide between the IEA, which represents industrialised countries, and the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries sends divergent signals about oil market strength in 2024 and, over the longer term, about the speed of the world's transition to cleaner fuels.

 May 16 - US crude, fuel inventories fall as refining, demand pick up, EIA says

U.S. crude oil, gasoline and distillate inventories fell last weekas both refining activity and fuel demand rose, the Energy Information Administration (EIA) said on Wednesday. Crude inventories dropped by 2.5 million barrels to 457 million barrels in the week ending May 10, the EIA said, compared with analysts' expectations in a Reuters poll for a 543,000-barrel draw.

May 15 - OPEC sticks to oil demand view, shifts key forecast to OPEC+

OPEC stuck to its forecast for strong growth in global oil demand in 2024 on Tuesday and said it would switch to focus on projected demand for OPEC+ crude, reflecting that the wider group is now the main forum for cooperation in the market. The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries, in a monthly report, said it expected world oil demand to rise by 2.25 million barrels per day (bpd) in 2024 and by 1.85 million bpd in 2025. Both forecasts were unchanged from last month.

May 15 - India oil demand driven by consumers rather than industry: Kemp

India’s oil consumption increased by 3.7 million tonnes (4.8%) in the first four months of 2024 compared with the same period in 2023, according to data from the government’s Petroleum Planning and Analysis Cell. Increased domestic consumption was equivalent to an extra 220,000 barrels per day (bpd), only slightly slower than growth of 235,000 bpd in the first four months of 2023 and 241,000 bpd in the same period in 2022.

May 14 - US oil output in top shale regions to hit six-month high in June ( EIA )

U.S. oil output from top shale-producing regions will rise in June to its highest in six months, the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) said in its monthly Drilling Productivity Report on Monday. Production in the top basins will reach 9.85 million barrels per day (bpd), its highest since December, the EIA said.

May 14 - Renewable diesel glut hits US refiner profits, threatens nascent industry

A rush by U.S. fuel makers to recalibrate their plants to produce renewable diesel has created a supply glut for low-emissions biofuels, hammering profit margins for refiners and threatening to impede a young industry. Turmoil in the biomass-based diesel sector, an umbrella term for renewable diesel and biodiesel, could become a roadblock to future investments in biofuels, the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) said this year. 

May 13 - Letter from London: The unbearable lightness of being US shale (Petroleum Economist)

While the US has been breaking records for its premium grade crude, there are doubts over whether you can have too much of a good thing

Crude quality does not grab the headlines like international crude prices do, but for producers, consumers and refiners it has a significant impact on decision-making. And crude quality has been a story that has reared its head in the geekier corners of the oil industry from time to time following US shale’s meteoric rise over the last decade and the ensuing lifting of the 40-year US ban on crude exports almost nine years ago.

Crude comes in many different varieties, with the main variables being weight (light/heavy) and sulphur content (sweet/sour). The American Petroleum Institute (API) gravity is a measure of how heavy or light an oil is compared with water, with an API of between 40 and 45 generally commanding the highest prices. All crudes above about 31 are considered light and come at a premium, while those below about 22 are seen as heavy and trade at a discount.

US shale is a high-quality crude, with key grades such as Eagle Ford and WTI Cushing having an API in excess of 40. That compares with key Middle East grades such as Saudi Arabia heavy and light which, despite their names, are both medium-weighted, along with Russian Urals.

“2024 is shaping up to be the year when it is heavy barrels that will be missing” Katona, Kpler

So, on the whole, US shale is an extremely valuable light crude that a lot of refiners like to snap up as it yields more higher-value oil products—such as middle distillates and gasoline—rather than fuel oil. Refiners are sophisticated and can mix and match grades to blend the products their customers want but only up to a certain point and assuming there are plenty of heavier grades to balance the mix. Otherwise, refiners can hit a wall.

Refiners also do not necessarily want to pay for light sweet crude when the economics, product yield or refinery setup are not in their interests. This is the story that lies behind the US shale production bonanza narrative: the one of the US seeking energy independence, the one around US output breaking records in excess of 13m b/d amid debate about for how long this will continue. US shale has flooded Europe, especially in the absence of Russian Urals, but there are limits to Europe’s consumption of it.

Light-headed Europe

It is sometimes argued that, once the lack of demand from refiners starts to limit the growth of US shale output, oil supply could start to struggle. A refining wall occurs when there is a mismatch between crude quality and refining capacity, and so all additional crude produced has to be exported. Eventually this feeds through to a worldwide refining wall, with plants not suited to running such a light slate.

Many analysts argue that wall has been slammed into in the US. The country was absorbing as much shale as it could well before Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, which was why inventories were going up and why the WTI oil price in the US crashed against the international Brent crude price. Europe has now been absorbing North Sea, US Gulf Coast, Nigerian and Azeri crude as well as Russia’s CPC—all light crude grades—and the refiners are running their plants as light as they can given the loss of Russia’s medium sour Urals grade from the mix.

In search of heavy barrels

“2024 is shaping up to be the year when it is heavy barrels that will be missing,” pointed out Viktor Katona, lead crude analyst at analytics firm Kpler, with a firm eye on a reduction in heavy Latin American grades. 

“[Mexican state-oil company] Pemex's cancellation of exports as prompt as April is a sign that the Dos Bocas refinery will be gradually moving towards a commercial ramp-up,” Katona noted, suggesting exports of the heavy sour Maya grade will be halved to 300,000b/d relatively soon. Mexico’s Dos Bocas refinery has been behind schedule and over budget but is now close to producing plenty of diesel and gasoline, and will help wean the country off expensive imports by using more of its heavy crude grades at home.

“Then it is Venezuela, a country that is almost guaranteed not to see any sanctions relief in 2025, meaning all the Merey cargoes that have gone towards US and Indian refiners in Q1 will disappear from the radars and [state-oil company] PDVSA is back to supplying one client: China,” Katona said. OPEC+ also provides an important role as the swathes of cuts to largely medium sour barrels raised questions over a lack of medium sour barrels throughout 2022 and 2023.

Those concerned with energy security and the wider energy industry should never forget the quality of crude as well as its quantity

But with Iraq being a serial non-complier to the OPEC+ production cuts, many analysts seem to believe it will probably have to cut from its heavier Basrah Heavy pool. Then there is Nigeria’s Dangote refinery, which has provided some outlet for US shale since its startup. However, once operations begin to ramp up, the mega-refinery will start to take more local medium sweet grades rather than the lighter shale variety. 

“Dangote still buys grades that are much lighter than the nominal refinery configuration, which should prioritise medium sweets with an API of 32–34. Instead, the three WTI cargoes that Dangote bought, or the 38–39 API average of its Nigerian domestic imports, suggest that secondary refining units are still not up to speed, despite primary runs ticking higher in recent weeks,” Katona explained.

“So the final quality switch at Dangote is still ahead, [and] the quality should move from the light sweet pool that it taps into currently towards a medium sweet pool, also buying up some of the [West African] barrels from adjacent countries that fit that description,” he added.

Finally, there will be the reallocation of Canadian heavy barrels that previously were exported from the US Gulf Coast to China or India towards the TMX pipeline. A higher saturation of the US West Coast with Canadian crude would also mean the Atlantic Basin heavies will suffer. The startup of the TMX pipeline expansion this year will triple the flow of crude from Alberta to Canada’s Pacific Coast to 890,000b/d.

If the US is looking at its energy security and peering into its strategic petroleum reserves, it would do well to consider crude quality and the importance of keeping it stocked with heavier grades when its light crude stocks are plentiful. This has been a mistake it has made in the past and, it should wake up to the fact that not all crude is created equal and lighter grades do not always mean a price premium.

With the US SPR creeping higher but still at lows, it should consider heavier barrels if and when it looks to replenish. At the moment, it looks only to sulphur content, and while that factor is important, it should also place more weight on API gravity. Those concerned with energy security and the wider energy industry should never forget the quality of crude as well as its quantity.

May 13 - Chinese companies win more bids to explore for Iraq oil and gas
Chinese companies won five more bids to explore Iraqi oil and gas fields, Iraq's oil minister said on Sunday, as the Middle Eastern country's hydrocarbon exploration licensing round continued into its second day. Chinese companies have been the only foreign players to win bids so far, taking licenses covering 10 oil and gas fields since Saturday, while Iraqi Kurdish company KAR Group took two.

May 13 - Russia's refined oil product exports to Singapore to hit highest this year in May, traders say
Russia's exports of naphtha to Singapore are on track to rise to their highest level this year in May as Russian refineries recover from drone attacks, traders and analysts estimated, with the trend poised to continue as more capacity comes online. Singapore imports of Russian naphtha, a key ingredient for making petrochemicals such as plastics and textile fibres, will rise to about 415,000 metric tons in May, LSEG Research estimated, while consultancy FGE expects nearly 500,000 tons.


May 10 - OPEC switches to 'call on OPEC+' in global oil demand outlook, sources say
OPEC will stop publishing a calculation of the world's demand for its own crude in its monthly oil report, two sources close to the matter said, focusing instead on forecasts for demand for oil from the wider OPEC+ group. The change reflects what has become long-standing cooperation between the members of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries and the wider grouping on taking collective oil supply decisions.

May 10 - Bear market for diesel spells fresh troubles for oil

Profit margins for diesel are slumping as new refineries boost supplies and as mild weather in the northern hemisphere and slow economic activity eat into demand, putting oil prices under further downward pressure. The lower refining margins for diesel, one of the world's key industrial and transport fuels, have already prompted some refiners in Asia to trim the volume of crude oil they process to reduce their diesel output.


May 09 - China April crude oil imports rise 5.45% on previous year
China's crude oil imports rose on the previous year in April, as refiners prepared for a fully recovered Labour Day holiday travel season, official data showed on Thursday. Crude imports in April totalled 44.72 million metric tons, or about 10.88 million barrels per day (bpd), according to data from the General Administration of Customs.

May 09 - US crude stockpiles fall, products post surprise build ( EIA )
U.S. crude oil stockpiles fell as refiners increased production, while fuel inventories rose unexpectedly last week, the Energy Information Administration (EIA) said on Wednesday. Crude inventories fell by 1.4 million barrels to 459.5 million barrels in the week ending May 3, according to the EIA, slightly more than analysts' expectations in a Reuters poll for a 1.1 million-barrel draw.


May 08 - EIA cuts 2024 world oil demand growth estimate, hikes output forecast
World oil demand this year is expected to grow less than earlier forecast and output should expand faster than previous estimates, resulting in a more balanced market, the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) said on Tuesday. The agency hiked its production forecasts from regions outside the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries, while also lowering its expectations of demand from developed economies, according to a monthly update of EIA's Short-Term Energy Outlook.

May 08 - BP softens tone on 2030 oil output cut to reassure investors
BP softened the language on its pledge to cut its 2030 oil and gas output in an effort to reassure investors over its energy transition strategy and narrow a gaping value gap with rivals. CEO Murray Auchincloss has in recent months pivoted the London-based firm's strategy to focus heavily on returns. He has been less emphatic than his predecessor Bernard Looney on BP's shift towards renewables and low-carbon energy.


May 07 - BP Q1 profits slump to $2.7 billion, missing forecasts
BP reported on Tuesday first-quarter earnings of $2.7 billion, down 40% from a year earlier and missing forecasts due to lower oil and gas prices and a U.S. refinery outage. The London-based company held its dividend steady at 7.27 cents per share and maintained the rate of its share buyback programme at $1.75 billion over the next three months, similar to the previous period.

May 07 - Exxon sees Hess arbitration dragging into 2025,
CEO says
U.S. energy major Exxon Mobil's arbitration case that could block Chevron's purchase of Hess will extend into 2025, Exxon CEO Darren Woods said in an interview on CNBC on Monday, ahead of a coming vote by Hess shareholders on the deal. Exxon and CNOOC Ltd filed cases before the International Chamber of Commerce in March, seeking a right-of-first-refusal over any sale of Hess's 30% stake in the Stabroek offshore oil block in Guyana, where the three companies control the largest oil discovery in nearly a decade.


May 06 - Saudi Arabia hikes June crude oil prices for most regions
Saudi Arabia raised the official selling prices (OSPs) for its crude sold to Asia, Northwest Europe and the Mediterranean in June, a statement from Aramco showed on Sunday, signaling expectations of strong demand this summer. The world's top exporter hiked its flagship Arab Light crude oil price to Asia to $2.90 a barrel above the Oman/Dubai average in June, the highest since January.

May 06 - Big Oil finds more to love in deepwater exploration fields
As Big Oil returns this week to the industry's annual showcase for offshore energy projects and equipment in Houston, deepwater discoveries off Guyana, Namibia and the U.S. Gulf Coast will take the spotlight. Offshore exploration had dimmed after the U.S. shale boom ushered in new and cheaper-to-tap supplies of oil, and as past offshore cost overruns pushed deepwater projects onto the industry's backburner.


May 03 - Oil prices end week with significant decline (Interfax.ru)

- Oil prices are weakly rising on Friday morning, but end the week with a significant decline.
Market pressure this week was driven by a sharp rise in US oil reserves. Moreover, the geopolitical risk premium is gradually eroding, owing to the hope of an Israeli-Hamas truce.

By 8:10 a.m. Moscow time, July Brent futures were up $0.19 (0.23%) on London's ICE Futures, to $83.86 per barrel. On Thursday, Brent gained $0.23 (0.3%) to $83.67 per barrel.

June WTI futures by this point had risen in price on the New York Mercantile Exchange NYMEX by $0.17 (0.22%), to $79.12 per barrel. During the previous session, the contract fell by $0.05 (0.1%), to $78.95 per barrel.

Since the beginning of this week, Brent fell by 4.9%, WTI - by 5.6%.

The fall in the oil market heightens experts' expectations that OPEC+ countries will continue to limit production. Most traders and analysts polled by Bloomberg expect the alliance countries adhering to voluntary production restraints to extend the measures until the end of this year.

"Traders have taken a wait-and-see approach, and the market has stabilized," Manish Raj, managing director of Velandera Energy Partners, told MarketWatch. With WTI below $80 a barrel, he said, OPEC has every reason to extend the current restrictions on oil production.


May 03 - US greenlights Exxon-Pioneer deal, alleges shale founder colluded with OPEC
U.S. regulators gave the go-ahead on Thursday to Exxon Mobil's $60 billion purchase of Pioneer Natural Resources, but barred Pioneer's former CEO from Exxon's board on allegations he attempted to collude with OPEC to raise oil prices. Former Pioneer CEO Scott Sheffield coordinated efforts with U.S. shale oil producers to constrain their output and raise energy prices, the Federal Trade Commission said.

May 03 - OPEC+ could extend oil cuts, formal talks yet to start,
sources say
OPEC and its allies have yet to begin formal talks on extending voluntary oil output cuts of 2.2 million barrels per day beyond June, but three sources from OPEC+ producers said they could keep their cuts if demand fails to pick up. OPEC+ has implemented a series of output cuts since late 2022 amid rising output from the United States and other non-member producers, and worries over demand as major economies grapple with high interest rates.


May 02 - Shell beats expectations with $7.7 bln first-quarter profit
Shell on Thursday reported first-quarter adjusted earnings of $7.7 billion, sharply beating expectations, on the back of strong oil trading and higher refining margins. The oil major announced it will repurchase a further $3.5 billion of its shares over the next three months, at a similar rate to the previous quarter. Its dividend remained unchanged.

May 02 - US crude stocks post surprise build as refining slows – EIA
U.S. crude oil and gasoline inventories rose unexpectedly last week as refineries slowed down running rates, the Energy Information Administration said on Wednesday. Crude inventories rose by 7.3 million barrels to 460.9 million barrels in the week ended April 26, the EIA said, compared with analysts' expectations in a Reuters poll for a 1.1 million-barrel draw.


May 01 - OPEC oil output falls in April, led by Iran and Iraq, survey finds
OPEC oil output has fallen in April, a Reuters survey found on Tuesday, reflecting lower exports from Iran, Iraq and Nigeria against a backdrop of ongoing voluntary supply cuts by some members agreed with the wider OPEC+ alliance. The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries pumped 26.49 million barrels per day (bpd) this month, down 100,000 bpd from March's revised total, the survey, based on shipping data and information from industry sources, found.

May 01 - US oil output, demand rose more than forecast in Feb, EIA data shows
U.S. oil supply recovered faster than forecast in February from extreme cold-related issues the prior month, while demand rose even more quickly, data from the U.S. Energy Information Administration showed on Tuesday. Total U.S. field production of crude oil rose by 578,000 barrels per day (bpd) in February to 13.15 million bpd, the biggest monthly increase since October 2021, EIA's monthly 914 production data showed.


Apr 30 - Saudi Arabia may raise prices for most oil grades to Asia for June
Top oil exporter Saudi Arabia may raise prices for most of the crude grades it sells to Asia in June to their highest levels in five months after Middle East benchmarks strengthened this month, trade sources said on Monday. The June official selling price (OSP) of flagship Arab Light crude may rise by 70 to 90 cents to close to a $3 per barrel premium to the average of Dubai and Oman quotes, seven refining sources said in a Reuters survey, which would be the highest level since January.

Apr 30 - Reliance buys its first Canadian crude from Trans Mountain pipeline, sources say
Reliance Industries has bought 2 million barrels of Canadian crude from Shell for July delivery, marking the Indian refiner's first oil purchase from Canada's new Trans Mountain pipeline, trade sources said. Reliance joins a growing group of Asian refiners in buying Canadian crude to be exported from the new pipeline which is scheduled to start transporting oil in May. The Canadian government-owned pipeline expansion will nearly triple the flow of crude from Alberta to Canada's Pacific Coast and open up access to Asia and the U.S. West Coast.


Apr 29 - Earnings for Big Oil backpedal as natgas prices tumble
U.S. and European oil companies reported weaker first quarter results on Friday due to a sharp drop in natural gas prices compared with a year ago. Results at oil and gas firms are still retreating from record levels in 2022 that were boosted by a surge in demand after the COVID-19 pandemic and then when prices spiked after Russia invaded Ukraine.

Apr 29 - Shell earns $1 billion a year from US crude trading, court filing shows
Financial details of Shell's vast oil and gas trading business are some of the company's closest-held secrets. Documents in a lawsuit filed by a former employee, however, revealed its U.S. crude trading regularly earns around $1 billion every year. Testimony by a former head of Shell's U.S. crude trading division filed in a Texas state court has offered a rare look at the huge profits of its trading operations and the multi-million dollar bonuses bestowed on traders.


Apr 26 - Stranded cargo shows credit challenges at Nigeria's Dangote refinery
Chinese state energy major PetroChina has been waiting to unload a cargo of U.S. crude at Nigeria's giant new refinery for nearly a month due to payment issues, according to four trading sources and shipping data. The impasse highlights difficulties the $20 billion plant funded by Africa's richest man Aliko Dangote faces in its aim to be the biggest refinery on the continent and in Europe when it reaches full capacity this or next year.

Apr 26 - Russia warns Kazakhstan oil transit to Germany at risk over service payments, sources say
Russia has warned Kazakhstan its oil transit to Germany could stop in June due to a payment impasse in a stark reminder of the landlocked country's reliance on Russia for its exports, sources said. The warning from state-controlled pipeline operator Transneft is a reminder of Kazakhstan's exports fragility with most of its flow of 1.5 million barrels per day or 1.5% of global supply going via various Russian pipelines.


Apr 25 - US crude stockpiles slump unexpectedly as exports jump, EIA says
U.S. crude oil inventories unexpectedly fell sharply last week as exports jumped, while gasoline stockpiles decreased less than forecast, the Energy Information Administration (EIA) said on Wednesday. Crude stocks slumped by 6.4 million barrels to 453.6 million barrels in the week ended April 19, the EIA said, compared with analysts' expectations in a Reuters poll for a 825,000-barrel rise.

Apr 25 - New technology helps US shale oil industry start to rebuild well productivity
Technology advances are making it possible for U.S. shale oil and gas companies to reverse years of productivity declines, but the related requirement to frontload costs by drilling many more wells is deterring some companies from doing so. While overall output is at record levels, the amount of oil recovered per foot drilled in the Permian Basin of Texas, the main U.S. shale formation, fell 15% from 2020 to 2023, putting it on par with a decade ago, according to energy researcher Enverus.


Apr 24 - Russia cuts oil price forecast to $65 per barrel in 2024-27
The Russian economy ministry has downgraded its forecasts for the country's crude oil export prices for the next three years to $65 per barrel, according to an updated outlook seen by Reuters on Tuesday. The forecasts, used to compile the federal budget, were cut from previous estimates of $71.3 per barrel for 2024, $70.1 for 2025 and $70 for 2026.

Apr 24 - US oil and gas M&A hits quarterly record after blockbuster 2023
U.S. oil and gas deals hit a record $51 billion in the first quarter, a continuation of last year's fierce merger pace centered in the top U.S. shale field, data provider Enverus said on Tuesday. Energy companies have rushed to expand oil and gas drilling inventories, especially in the Permian Basin of West Texas and New Mexico, where producer break-even costs are about $64 a barrel. Oil prices averaged about $77 a barrel last quarter and this week traded near $83 per barrel.


Apr 23 - As shale oil gains slow, deepwater port struggles for customers
As U.S. shale oil boomed last decade, an oil pipeline company pitched an ambitious multi-billion-dollar export port off the Texas coast to ship domestic crude to buyers in Europe and Asia. In April, Enterprise Products Partners' SPOT became the first project to receive a license from the U.S. maritime regulator for a deepwater port that could load two supertankers, each of which can carry up to 2 million barrels of oil at a time.

Apr 23 - Galp seeks to sell stake in Namibia oilfield after discovery, sources say
Portuguese oil company Galp Energia has launched the sale of half of its stake in an exploration block offshore Namibia where it has made a major oil discovery, three industry sources familiar with the matter told Reuters. Galp's Mopane discovery, which is estimated to hold at least 10 billion barrels of oil and gas equivalent, appears to be one of the largest in the basin which could help kickstart the southern African country's oil industry even as governments around the world seek to reduce fossil fuel consumption.


Apr 22 - China's imports of Russian oil near record high in March
Russia remained China's top oil supplier in March, data showed on Saturday, as refiners snapped up stranded Sokol shipments. China's imports from Russia, including supplies via pipelines and sea-borne shipments, jumped 12.5% on the year to 10.81 million metric tons, or 2.55 million barrels per day (bpd) last month, according to data from the General Administration of Customs.

Apr 22 - China's March fuel oil exports fall 32% y/y
China's exports of marine fuel oil fell 32% in March from a year earlier to 1.32 million metric tons, data from the General Administration of Customs showed on Saturday. The exports are measured mostly by sales from bonded storage for vessels plying international routes.


Apr 19 - Oil surges as reports of Israeli strike on Iran roil markets
Oil prices jumped as reports that Israel had attacked Iran roiled markets and sparked concerns that Middle East oil supply could be disrupted. Israel launched an attack on Iranian soil, sources told Reuters, the latest tit-for-tat exchange between the two countries that threatens to drag the region deeper into conflict. The benchmark contracts surged more than $3 before easing slightly. At 0615 GMT, Brent futures were up $1.40, or 1.61%, at $88.51 a barrel. The most active U.S. West Texas Intermediate contract climbed $1.38, or 1.68%, to $83.48 per barrel.

Apr 19 - Russia squeezes Mideast, OPEC shares in India's oil market to historic lows
Russia became the top oil supplier to India during the fiscal year 2023/24 for a second year in a row, squeezing the market share of Middle Eastern and OPEC producers to historic lows, ship tracking data from industry sources showed. New Delhi has been gorging on Russian oil sold at a discount after Western nations shunned purchases and imposed sanctions on Moscow over its invasion of Ukraine. As a result Russia is now the top supplier to the world's third-largest oil importer.


Apr 18 - Venezuela oil sector hit by loss of its widest US license
Venezuela's loss of a key U.S. license that allowed it to export oil to markets around the world and secure investment is expected to hit the volume and quality of its crude and fuel sales while prompting a flurry of requests for individual U.S deal authorizations. U.S. officials had warned that absent progress by President Nicolas Maduro's administration on implementing an electoral roadmap agreed last year, the U.S. would not renew license 44, which since October has eased oil sanctions in place for the last five years.

Apr 18 - US crude stockpiles rise, products draw down as refining falls - EIA
U.S. crude oil stockpiles rose and gasoline and distillate inventories fell more than forecast last week as refining slowed down for a third week in a row, the Energy Information Administration said on Wednesday. Crude inventories rose by 2.7 million barrels to 460 million barrels in the week ending April 12, the EIA said, nearly double analysts' expectations in a Reuters poll for a 1.4 million-barrel build.


Apr 17 - Biden unlikely to cut Iran's oil lifeline after Israel attack
Iran's unprecedented missile and drone strike on Israel is unlikely to prompt dramatic sanctions action on Iran's oil exports from the Biden administration due to worries about boosting oil prices and angering top buyer China, said analysts. Shortly after Tehran launched its weekend attack - retaliation for Israel's suspected April 1 strike on the Iranian consulate in Damascus - House Republican leaders accused President Joe Biden of failing to enforce existing measures and said they would take up this week a series of bills to sharpen sanctions on Iran.

Apr 17 - US could release more SPR oil to keep gas prices low, senior White House adviser says
U.S. President Joe Biden will do what he can to ensure affordable gasoline prices, White House senior adviser John Podesta said at an industry conference on Tuesday, when asked about future releases of crude oil from the Strategic Petroleum Reserve. The Biden administration in 2022 sold 180 million barrels of oil in about six months from the reserve, the largest ever SPR sale, in an attempt to lower gasoline prices after Russia invaded Ukraine.


Apr 16 - China crude throughput up 1.3% in March on stronger economic backdrop
China's oil refinery throughput rose in March as refiners stepped up runs amid signs of a tentative economic recovery in the world's second largest consumer of crude. Total refinery throughput was 63.78 million metric tons, data from the National Bureau of Statistics showed. That was equivalent to 15.09 million barrels per day, up from 14.45 million in the January-February period.

Apr 16 - US oil output from top shale regions to rise in May, EIA says
U.S. oil output from top shale-producing regions will rise in May to the highest level in five months, the U.S. Energy Information Administration said in its monthly Drilling Productivity Report on Monday. Production from the top basins will climb by more than 16,000 barrels per day to 9.86 million bpd, the strongest output since December, the EIA said.


Apr 15 - Iranian attacks on Israel sees only muted crude oil reaction: Russell
Crude oil's initial reaction to Iran's drone and missile attacks on Israel was muffled, with prices of the major contracts barely shifting. There were fears that the barrage of weapons fired at Israel signalled a major escalation of conflict in the Middle East, and the oil price would shift higher in response to heightened fears of possible supply disruptions.

Apr 15 - Kazakhstan to compensate for exceeding OPEC+ quota in March
Kazakhstan will compensate for exceeding its oil production quota under the OPEC+ agreement in March, the country's energy ministry said in a statement on Sunday. The ministry said that according to "secondary sources", Kazakhstan produced 131,000 barrels per day above its quota in March due to weather conditions and heating requirements.

Apr 12 - UAE's ADNOC recently eyed BP as takeover target, sources say
The United Arab Emirates' state-owned oil company recently considered buying Britain's BP but the deliberations did not progress beyond preliminary discussions, people familiar with the matter told Reuters. Abu Dhabi National Oil Company ultimately decided BP would not be the right fit for its strategy, three people said. Political considerations also weighed on the potential move, one of the people said.

Apr 12 - OPEC sees robust summer oil demand, economic upside potential
OPEC predicted robust fuel use in the summer months on Thursday and stuck to its forecast for relatively strong growth in global oil demand in 2024, highlighting an unusually large gap between predictions of oil demand strength. The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries, in a monthly report, said world oil demand will rise by 2.25 million barrels per day in 2024 and by 1.85 million bpd in 2025.


Apr 11 - Russia considers easing gasoline environmental requirements, sources say
Russia's government is looking at the possibility of introducing some easing of rigorous fuel environmental standards in order to allow the usage of low-quality gasoline in the face of possible fuel shortages, three industry sources told Reuters. According to sources' calculations, it could bring in additional 10%, or between 300,000 metric tons and 350,000 tons a month, of gasoline to the domestic market, enough to meet rising seasonal demand.

Apr 11 - US oil inventories rise across the board on low exports, weak demand – EIA
U.S. crude oil, gasoline and distillate inventories rose last week mainly driven by low crude exports and as implied demand for refined products declined, the Energy Information Administration said on Wednesday. Crude inventories rose by 5.8 million barrels to 457.3 million barrels in the week ended April 5, the EIA said, compared with analysts' expectations in a Reuters poll for a 2.4 million-barrel rise.


Apr 10 - US EIA raises oil output, price forecasts for 2024
U.S. crude oil output is set to grow slightly more than earlier estimates for this year and next, the U.S. Energy Information Administration said on Tuesday, while also hiking its global and domestic oil price forecasts. U.S. crude production will rise by around 280,000 barrels per day this year to 13.21 million bpd, and by 510,000 bpd to 13.72 million bpd in 2025, the EIA forecast.

Apr 10 - BP expects rise in first-quarter upstream energy output
BP said on Tuesday it expects first-quarter upstream production of both oil and gas as well as low-carbon energy to be higher than the previous three months. The London-listed oil major also expects strong results in oil and gas trading, along with a $100 million-$200 million boost from improved oil refining margins.


Apr 09 - Mexico to cut at least 330,000 bpd of crude exports in May, sources say
Mexico's state energy company, Pemex, is planning to cut at least 330,000 barrels per day (bpd) of crude exports in May, leaving customers in the United States, Europe and Asia with a third less supply, two sources said. The plan follows the withdrawal of 436,000 bpd of Maya, Isthmus and Olmeca crudes this month, ordered by Pemex to its trading arm PMI Comercio Internacional because it needs to supply more to its domestic refineries as it targets energy self-sufficiency.

Apr 09 - Despite $90 crude, US oil output capped by weak natgas prices
U.S. crude oil prices last week climbed to their highest this year, but a weak natural gas market, steeper costs and a focus on shareholder returns over new production are keeping shale drillers from big output increases in the world's top oil and gas producer. The global Brent oil benchmark last week was trading above $91 a barrel, while in the U.S., West Texas Intermediate (WTI) futures were over $86 a barrel, their highest since October.


Apr 08 - One dead, two seriously injured after fire hit Pemex oil platform in Mexico
At least one contractor was killed after a fire struck an offshore platform operated by Mexico's national oil company Pemex, the firm said in a statement on Sunday, adding that two others were in "grave" condition. A total of nine workers suffered injuries in the blaze on Saturday afternoon that struck the company's Akal-B platform, located in the southern Gulf of Mexico, where most of Pemex oil output originates.

Apr 08 - Russia's Orsk oil refinery suspends work after dam bursts amid flooding
Russia's Orsk oil refinery suspended work on Sunday, after the city's dam burst on Friday night amid flooding in the surrounding Orenburg region, Russian news agency cited the plant's press service as saying.The refinery, located around 1800km (1100 miles) east of Moscow, close to Russia's border with Kazakhstan, has an annual capacity of six million tons of oil.


Apr 04 - OPEC+ keeps output policy steady as oil nears $90 a barrel
A meeting of top OPEC+ ministers kept oil supply policy unchanged and pressed some countries to increase compliance with output cuts, a decision that spurred international crude prices to their highest in five months at nearly $90 a barrel. A ministerial committee (JMMC) of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries and allies led by Russia, known as OPEC+, met online on Wednesday to review the market and members' implementation of output cuts.

Apr 04 - Exxon Mobil signals weaker oil and gas prices to hit first-quarter profit
Exxon Mobil on Wednesday signaled first-quarter operating results would drop over the prior quarter on weaker oil, gas prices and a big loss in fuel derivatives, a securities filing showed. The drop follows two years of strong oil and fuel prices that turned the largest U.S. oil company into one of the most profitable energy companies globally. Last year, it posted a record profit for a first quarter at $11.4 billion.


Apr 03 - OPEC+ unlikely to change output policy at April 3 meeting
An OPEC+ ministerial panel is unlikely to recommend any oil output policy changes at a meeting on Wednesday, five OPEC+ sources told Reuters, as oil prices hit their highest this year. The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries and allies led by Russia, known as OPEC+, will hold an online joint ministerial monitoring committee meeting (JMMC) on April 3 to review the market and members' implementation of output cuts they have already agreed to extend.

Apr 03 - Ukrainian drone hits Russia's third-biggest refinery, damage not critical
A Ukrainian drone struck Russia's third-largest oil refinery on Tuesday about 1,300 km (800 miles) from the front lines, hitting a unit that processes about 155,000 barrels of crude per day, though an industry source said strike caused no critical damage. A Ukrainian intelligence source said Ukraine hit the primary refining unit at the oil refinery in Russia's highly industrialised Tatarstan region and caused a fire.


Apr 02 - OPEC oil output falls in March, led by Iraq - Reuters survey
OPEC oil output fell last month, a Reuters survey found on Monday, reflecting lower exports from Iraq and Nigeria against a backdrop of ongoing voluntary supply cuts by some members agreed with the wider OPEC+ alliance. The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries pumped 26.42 million barrels per day (bpd) last month, down 50,000 bpd from February, the survey, based on shipping data and information from industry sources, found.

Apr 02 - China's oil majors face uphill climb to adapt to EV future
Tucked away on a side road in suburban Beijing, the Xiaowuji battery charging station opened by Sinopec in December 2023 offers a glimpse of China's post-gasoline future. Boasting 70 fast electric vehicle charging points, coffee machines and massage chairs, the station is one of thousands being built by the state-run oil giant across the country as it looks to adapt to battery dominated driving.


Apr 01 - Russia will cut oil output in Q2 to catch up with other OPEC+ countries (Novak)
Russia has decided to focus on reducing oil output rather than exports in the second quarter in order to evenly spread production cuts with other OPEC+ member countries, Deputy Prime Minister Alexander Novak said on Friday. Earlier this month, Russia said it would cut its oil output and exports by an additional 471,000 barrels per day (bpd) in the second quarter in coordination with some OPEC+ participating countries.

Apr 01 - US crude output falls 6% in January due to severe cold, EIA says
U.S. crude oil production dropped in January to 12.5 million barrels per day (bpd), a 6% decline from December's record high, following freezing weather, data from the Energy Information Administration showed on Friday. Crude oil output in top oil state Texas fell in January to 5.4 million bpd, down about 5% from the prior month, the data showed, while production in North Dakota fell nearly 13% to 1.1 million bpd.


Mar 28 - US crude, gasoline stocks rise on strong crude imports, weak gasoline demand
U.S. crude oil and gasoline inventories rose unexpectedly last week driven by a rise in crude imports and sluggish gasoline demand, the Energy Information Administration said on Wednesday. Crude inventories rose by 3.2 million barrels to 448.2 million barrels in the week ended March 22, the EIA said, compared with analysts' expectations in a Reuters poll for a 1.3 million-barrel draw.

Mar 28 - US to buy oil for SPR oil at above $79 target price in latest round
The Biden administration on Wednesday awarded contracts to buy 2.8 million barrels of oil for the government's emergency reserve for more than $81 a barrel, $2 above the target purchase price. The Department of Energy (DOE) it will spent $225.6 million to buy oil to refill the Strategic Petroleum Reserve (SPR) from Atlantic Trading & Marketing, Macquarie Commodities, and Sunoco Partners Marketing & Terminals. The oil is set to be delivered in September.


Mar 27 - OPEC+ unlikely to change output policy before June meeting
OPEC+ is unlikely to make any oil output policy changes until a full ministerial gathering in June, three OPEC+ sources told Reuters ahead of next week's gathering of ministers that is not expected to make any policy recommendations. The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries and allies led by Russia, known as OPEC+, will hold an online joint ministerial monitoring committee meeting (JMMC) on April 3 to review the market and members' implementation of output cuts.

Mar 27 - Russia struggles to collect oil payments as China, UAE, Turkey raise bank scrutiny
Russian oil firms face delays of up to several months to be paid for crude and fuel as banks in China, Turkey and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) become more wary of U.S. secondary sanctions, eight sources familiar with the matter said. Payment delays reduce revenue to the Kremlin and make them erratic, allowing Washington to achieve its dual policy sanction goals - to disrupt money going to the Kremlin to punish it for the war in Ukraine while not interrupting global energy flows.


Mar 26 - Russia orders companies to cut oil output to meet OPEC+ target
Russia's government has ordered companies to reduce oil output in the second quarter to ensure they meet a production target of 9 million barrels per day (bpd) by the end of June in line with its pledges to OPEC+, three industry sources said on Monday. Earlier this month, Russian Deputy Prime Minister Alexander Novak said that Russia would cut its oil output and exports by an additional 471,000 barrels per day (bpd) in the second quarter, in coordination with some members of the Organization of the Petroleum Countries and allied producers (OPEC+).

Mar 26 - Indian refiners buy more US crude as Russia sanctions tighten
More than 250,000 barrels per day of U.S. crude is set to arrive in India next month, the highest in more than a year, ship tracking data showed, amid tighter enforcement of sanctions on Russian crude. India, the world's third-biggest oil importer and consumer, is looking to diversify its oil supplies as fresh U.S. sanctions on Moscow threaten to dent Russian oil sales to India, the biggest buyer of Russian seaborne crude.


Mar 25 - A year after Iraq-Turkey pipeline halt, no progress to resume flows
A year after the closure of the Iraq-Turkey oil pipeline, the conduit that once handled about 0.5% of global oil supply is still stuck in limbo as legal and financial hurdles impede the resumption of flows, three sources told Reuters. About 450,000 barrels per day of crude once flowed through Iraq's northern oil export route via Turkey, and its closure has led to the loss of roughly $11 billion to $12 billion for Iraq, the Association of the Petroleum Industry of Kurdistan (APIKUR) estimates.

Mar 25 - CERAWEEK-Financiers grab reins as new energy startups struggle
Private equity firms are increasing their direct oversight of energy transition companies in their portfolios, taking on added duties to address runaway costs from supply chain issues and preserve valuations, executives said at the CERAWeek energy conference this week. Excitement around new energy technologies saw billions of dollars of investment poured in the last four years into those aiming to shape the energy transition with biofuels, hydrogen, solar, wind and carbon removal technologies.


Mar 22 - Russia says Ukraine's idea of $30 oil price cap "beyond all bounds"
Russia said on Thursday that the United States was unlikely to agree to a Ukrainian proposal to lower the price cap on Russian oil to $30 a barrel because it would roil global energy markets and damage the U.S. economy. After Russia sent troops into Ukraine in 2022, the West sought to sink the Russian economy by imposing a myriad of sanctions and in 2022 slapped a $60 a barrel price cap on Russian oil, which is currently traded at around $68 per barrel.

Mar 22 - Europe, Africa oil markets weaken on refining maintenance, extra supply
Crude oil physical markets in Europe and Africa have weakened in response to peak refinery maintenance and extra supply from the United States and Saudi Arabia, dampening the impact of Red Sea shipping delays, according to traders, flows data and analysts. These factors, to some extent, mitigate the effect that rising crude prices will have on energy costs. A jump in energy costs could threaten to unwind some of the recent falls in global inflation just as central banks are expected to begin cutting interest rates.

Mar 21 - India's Reliance refusing Sovcomflot oil shipments after sanctions, sources say
India's Reliance Industries, operator of the world's biggest refining complex, will not buy Russian oil loaded on tankers operated by shipper Sovcomflot (SCF) after recent U.S. sanctions, according to two sources familiar with the matter. The development adds to oil export problems for Russia as its oil firms may face difficulties finding ships to sell surplus oil after recent Ukrainian drone attacks on the state's refineries. Russian companies are already struggling to collect payments for oil exports due to banking restrictions.

Mar 21 - CERAWEEK-US permit reviews, red tape provoke energy conference debates
U.S. energy permitting delays and the need for streamlined new project reviews dominated conversations among oil and gas executives and lawmakers in meeting rooms and hallways at the CERAWeek energy conference this week. The fossil fuel industry historically has objected to red tape that slows or raises development costs. But the topic has moved higher on their agenda after U.S. President Joe Biden's administration hit pause on reviews of permits of new gas export plants as rules governing clean-energy incentives undercut enthusiasm around the Inflation Reduction Act.


Mar 20 - China's Jan-Feb fuel oil imports rise 21% y/y
China's fuel oil imports for the January and February period rose by a fifth from a year ago, data from the General Administration of Customs showed. Imports for the first two months of the year were at 3.59 million metric tons, up 21% from the corresponding period in 2023.

Mar 20 - Russia remains China's top crude supplier in Jan-Feb
Russia remained China's top oil supplier in the first two months of this year, data showed on Wednesday, as Saudi supply cuts continued. China's imports from Russia, including supplies via pipelines and sea-borne shipments, rose 13% on the year to 17.72 million metric tons, or 2.16 million barrels per day (bpd) over the January and February period, according to data from the General Administration of Customs.


Mar 19 - Iraq to curb oil exports to compensate for exceeding OPEC+ quota
Iraq will reduce its crude exports to 3.3 million barrels a day (bpd) in the coming months to compensate for exceeding its OPEC+ quota since January, the oil ministry said on Monday, a pledge that would cut shipments by 130,000 bpd from last month. OPEC's second-largest producer Iraq pumped significantly more in January and February than an output target established in January when several members of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries and allies (OPEC+), including Iraq, agreed to support the oil market.

Mar 19 - Saudi Aramco CEO says no peak in oil demand for some time to come
Global oil demand will not peak for some time so policy makers need to ensure sufficient investment in oil and gas to meet consumption and abandon the fantasy of phasing out fossil fuels, Saudi Aramco CEO Amin Nasser said on Monday. The head of the world's largest energy company urged a re-set of global energy transition plans in remarks to oil and gas executives at the CERAWeek conference in Houston.


Mar 18 - China Jan-Feb refinery output up 3% on Lunar New Year travels
China's crude oil throughput in January and February rose 3% compared to the same two months a year earlier, data showed, as refineries raised production to meet strong demand for transport fuels over the busy Lunar New Year travel period. Total refinery throughput in the world's second-largest oil consumer was 118.76 million metric tons, equivalent to 14.45 million barrels per day (bpd), data from the National Bureau of Statistics showed.

Mar 18 - Inventory builds, Red Sea concerns pressure Asia diesel margins: Russell
The profit margin for making diesel in Asia is coming under sustained pressure from a glut of supplies as major exporters boost shipments and fewer cargoes head to Europe because of concerns over shipping via the Red Sea. The crack spread, or profit margin, of making a barrel of gasoil, the building block for middle distillate fuels such as diesel and jet kerosene, at a typical Singapore refinery ended at $20.33 a barrel on March 15.


Mar 15 - IEA raises oil demand outlook again but still lags OPEC
The International Energy Agency on Thursday raised its view on 2024 oil demand growth for a fourth time since November as Houthi attacks disrupt Red Sea shipping, though it remains far less bullish than producer group OPEC. The Organization of the Petroleum-Exporting Countries (OPEC) and the IEA, which represents industrialised countries, have clashed in recent years over issues such as the long-term oil demand outlook and the need for investment in new supply.

Mar 15 - Non-OPEC+ to lead 2024 oil production growth, offsetting output cuts - EIA
Near-term global oil and liquids production growth will be driven primarily by the U.S., Guyana, Canada, and Brazil, offsetting voluntary production cuts by OPEC+, the U.S. Energy Information Agency (EIA) forecast on Thursday. The boost to supply comes as the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries and allies, known as OPEC+, this month agreed to extend voluntary output cuts of 2.2 million barrels per day in a bid to boost prices.


Mar 14 - OPEC says IEA commentary on oil security encouraging
Oil producer group OPEC said on Wednesday it was encouraged by a commentary from the International Energy Agency (IEA) which underscored the importance of oil security, while the two remained far apart on the demand outlook. The commentary by the IEA, which advises industrialised countries, follows clashes between it and OPEC in recent years over issues such as long-term demand and the need for investment in new supplies.

Mar 14 - US gasoline stockpiles slump more than forecast on rising demand - EIA
U.S. crude oil stockpiles fell unexpectedly last week as refineries ramped up processing while gasoline inventories slumped as demand rose, the Energy Information Administration (EIA) said on Wednesday. After six straight weeks of builds, crude inventories fell by 1.5 million barrels to 447 million barrels in the week ended March 8, the EIA said, compared with analysts' expectations in a Reuters poll for a 1.3 million-barrel rise.


Mar 13 - OPEC sticks to oil demand view, nudges up economic growth
OPEC on Tuesday stuck to its forecast for relatively strong growth in global oil demand in 2024 and 2025, and further raised its economic growth forecast for this year saying there was more room for improvement. The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries said in a monthly report that world oil demand will rise by 2.25 million barrels per day (bpd) in 2024 and by 1.85 million bpd in 2025. Both forecasts were unchanged from last month.

Mar 13 - US raises domestic crude production growth forecast for 2024
The U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) on Tuesday predicted that domestic oil production will grow by 260,000 barrels per day (bpd) in 2024, up 90,000 barrels per day from its previous forecast, but said estimated production cuts from OPEC+ will still slow global oil growth. U.S. crude oil production will rise to 13.19 million barrels per day this year, the EIA said in its Short-Term Energy Outlook (STEO). It had previously projected that crude production would rise this year by 170,000 bpd.


Mar 12 - US leads global oil production for sixth straight year - EIA
U.S. crude oil production lead global oil production for a sixth straight year, with a record breaking average production of 12.9 million barrels per day (bpd), the Energy Information Administration (EIA) said in a release on Monday. In December, U.S. crude oil production hit a new monthly record high of over 13.3 million bpd, the agency said.

Mar 12 - OPEC, IEA at most divided on oil demand since at least 2008
Producer group OPEC and the International Energy Agency, the world's most closely watched forecasters of oil demand growth, are further apart than they have been for at least 16 years in their views on fuel use, according to Reuters research. The gap between the IEA, which represents industrialised countries, and the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries means the two are sending divergent signals to traders and investors on oil market strength in 2024 and, for the longer term, about the speed of the world's transition to cleaner fuels.


Mar 11 - Aramco hikes dividend 30% to $98 bln despite drop in profit
Saudi Arabia's state-owned oil giant Aramco boosted its dividend despite net profit falling 24.7% to $121.3 billion in 2023 on lower oil prices and volumes, showing the state's continued reliance on oil revenue as it seeks to diversify. The profit, down from $161.1 billion in 2022, was still the company's second-highest on record, Aramco said on Sunday as it reported total dividends for the year of $97.8 billion, up 30%. Oil revenues made up 62% of total state revenues last year.

Mar 11 - Chevron's CEO faces challenges of a lifetime with Hess bid
Chevron CEO Michael Wirth is facing a head-to-head match with Exxon Mobil with his $53 billion bid for Hess and its stake in oil hotspot Guyana, and could wind up trapped in a dispute between two of South America’s biggest energy rivals. On Wednesday, Exxon filed anarbitration claim that could block Hess' proposed merger with Chevron. The sale includes Hess' 30% stake in a consortium that has discovered more than 11 billion barrels of oil in Guyana's Stabroek offshore block, which analysts say has potential recoverable oil at upwards of 20 billion barrels.


Mar 08 - IEA sees relatively well supplied oil market in 2024
The global oil market is relatively well supplied with demand growth slowing, while supply is increasing from the Americas, the head of the International Energy Agency's (IEA) oil markets and industry division told Reuters on Thursday. "Depending on the pace of oil demand growth going forward, the strength of summer demand, any unexpected outages, we see that the market (is) relatively well supplied this year," Toril Bosoni said on a sidelines of an industry conference in Oslo.

Mar 08 - China's crude oil imports rise on-year, but softer trend remains: Russell
China's imports of crude oil rose in the first two months of the year compared with the same period in 2023, but they were also weaker than the preceding months, continuing a trend of softening purchases by the world's biggest buyer. Official customs data released on Thursday showed crude imports of 88.31 million metric tons in the January-February period, up 5.1% from the same period in 2023.


Mar 07 - China Jan-Feb crude imports rise on strong holiday travel demand
China's imports of crude oil rose 5.1% in the first two months of 2024 from a year earlier, data showed on Thursday, as refiners ramped up purchases to meet fuel sales during the Lunar New Year holiday. Imports during January and February amounted to 88.31 million metric tons, or about 10.74 million barrels per day (bpd), according to the General Administration of Customs.

Mar 07 - US Democrats urge antitrust regulator to probe oil, gas mergers
Nearly 50 Democrats in the U.S. Congress on Wednesday urged the Federal Trade Commission to probe oil and gas company deals and expand current investigations to protect consumers and industry competition. The industry went on a $250 billion buying spree in 2023, taking advantage of companies' high stock prices to secure lower-cost reserves. Exxon Mobil Chevron Corp, and Occidental Petroleum made acquisitions worth a total of $135 billion in 2023.


Mar 06 - Return of US oil sanctions would clip Venezuela's output gains, analysts say
A possible reimposition of U.S. oil sanctions on Venezuela next month would stagnate the OPEC-member country's crude output, wiping out the small gains it has achieved in recent years, analysts said on Tuesday. Washington said in January it will allow the expiry of a temporary license it granted last year to Venezuela as part of negotiations for a fair presidential election if the government does not allow an internationally observed election with participation of a candidate chosen by the opposition.

Mar 06 - Russia oil fleet shifts away from Liberia, Marshall Island flags amid US sanctions crackdown
Dozens of oil tankers used by Russia have stopped sailing under the Liberian and Marshall Islands flags in recent weeks after the United States ramped up sanctions enforcement on ships linked to those registries, according to shipping data and interviews with industry and government officials. The shift reflects the close relationship between the U.S. and the flag administration companies of Liberia and the Marshall Islands, which are headquartered not in their home countries, but in Virginia, just miles from Washington D.C. and within the jurisdiction of U.S. sanctions enforcement.


Mar 05 - Reduced refining capacity, sanctions force Russia to cut oil output
Russia on Sunday announced additional voluntary cuts in oil supply mainly in the form of production cuts rather than exports, as it faced curtailed refining capacity as well as stricter sanctions, analysts said. Russia has declared plans to cut its oil output and exports by an additional 471,000 barrels per day (bpd) in April-June in coordination with some OPEC+ participating countries.

Mar 05 - Low volumes and profits herald soft Asia diesel market - Russell
Asia's exports of diesel slumped to a multi-year low in February, and while volumes may recover in March on rising shipments from China and India, it's likely prices will come under further downward pressure. A total of 6.6 million metric tons of diesel were exported from Asia in February, down from January's 8.13 million and the weakest monthly figure for at least two years, according to data compiled by LSEG Oil Research.


Mar 04 - OPEC+ producers extend oil output cuts to second quarter
OPEC+ members led by Saudi Arabia and Russia agreed on Sunday to extend voluntary oil output cuts of 2.2 million barrels per day into the second quarter, giving extra support to the market amid concerns over global growth and rising output outside the group. Saudi Arabia, the de facto leader of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC), said it would extend its voluntary cut of 1 million barrels per day (bpd) through the end of June, leaving its output at around 9 million bpd.

Mar 04 - Venezuela's February oil exports rise, but shipping delays persist
Venezuela's oil exports slightly increased in February to some 670,000 barrels per day (bpd), but ongoing shipping delays worsened a bottleneck of tankers waiting to load, according to documents and vessel monitoring data. State-run oil firm PDVSA's customers have rushed to send tankers to Venezuela in recent months to pick up crude and fuel before the United States potentially reimposes oil sanctions.


Mar 01 - OPEC February oil output rises on Libya rebound - Reuters survey
OPEC oil output in February has risen, a Reuters survey found on Thursday, as a recovery in Libyan production from disruption offset the impact of voluntary cuts by other members agreed with the wider OPEC+ alliance. The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) pumped 26.42 million barrels per day (bpd) this month, up 90,000 bpd from January, the survey found.

Mar 01 - Ample supply to hold down oil prices as Middle East risks pale
The Middle East conflict is unlikely to move the needle much in oil markets this year with ample global supplies reining prices in around the current $80 a barrel level, a Reuters poll showed on Thursday. A survey of 40 economists and analysts forecast Brent crude would average $81.13 per barrel in 2024, slightly down from the $81.44 consensus in January. U.S. crude forecasts were cut to $76.54 a barrel, from $77.26 last month.


Feb 29 - New sanctions threaten Russian oil sales to India
Fresh U.S. sanctions on Moscow threaten to dent Russian oil sales to India, the biggest buyer of Russian seaborne crude, and complicate efforts by Indian state refiners to secure annual supply deals, three industry sources familiar with the matter said. Washington on Friday imposed sanctions to mark the second anniversary of Moscow's invasion of Ukraine and retaliate for the death of opposition leader Alexei Navalny.

Feb 29 - Russia tries to clear Sokol oil glut with fresh China sales
Six tankers with Russian oil in ships sanctioned by the United States were sailing to Chinese ports this week, but it wasn't clear if they would be allowed to discharge, according to LSEG, Kpler, Vortexa shipping data and two industry sources. Were China to buy oil in the tankers it would help alleviate one of the worst gluts of Russian oil in the last two years caused by payment issues amid Western sanctions imposed on Russia due to its military actions in Ukraine.


Feb 28 - OPEC+ to consider extending voluntary oil output cuts, sources say
OPEC+ will consider extending voluntary oil output cuts into the second quarter, three OPEC+ sources told Reuters, to provide additional support for the market, and could keep them in place until the end of the year, according to two of them. Last November, the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries and allies led by Russia agreed to voluntary cuts totalling about 2.2 million barrels per day (bpd) for the first quarter this year, led by Saudi Arabia rolling over its own voluntary cut.

Feb 28 - Oil and gas upstream M&A deal value hits highest Q1 levels since 2017
An ongoing consolidation in the U.S. shale industry has driven up global M&A deal value in the oil and gas exploration sector to its highest first-quarter level in seven years, industry experts said. Deals worth more than $55 billion have been announced in the first two months of 2024, according to analytics firm Enverus, as publicly traded companies take advantage of their high share price to gobble up smaller firms.


Feb 27 - US crude stocks likely seen up last week, products seen down
U.S. crude inventories rose last week, while distillates and gasoline stockpiles were seen falling, a preliminary Reuters poll showed on Monday. Three analysts polled by Reuters estimated on average that crude inventories rose by about 1.8 million barrels in the week to Feb. 23.

Feb 27 - Chevron, Exxon in dispute over Hess stake in Guyana oil block
Exxon Mobil Corp said on Monday it may preempt Chevron Corp's acquisition of a 30% stake in a giant Guyana oil block, the centerpiece of its deal for Hess Corp. The companies are in talks on Exxon's claim it has a right to first refusal of any sale of the Stabroek block, a giant field off the coast of Guyana that contains at least 11 billion barrels of oil.


Feb 26 - US drillers add most oil rigs in a week since November
U.S. energy firms this week added the most oil rigs since November, and the most in a month since October 2022, energy services firm Baker Hughes said in its closely followed report on Friday. The combined oil and gas rig count, an early indicator of future output, rose by five to 626 in the week to Feb. 23, its highest since August 2023.

Feb 26 - US imposes sanctions on Russia's leading tanker group Sovcomflot
The U.S. has imposed sanctions on Russia's leading tanker group Sovcomflot as Washington seeks to reduce Russia's revenues from oil sales it can use to support the invasion of Ukraine, the Treasury Department said on Friday.  Russia is one of he world's top oil exporters and the sanctions were the latest in an effort by Western countries to add costs on the shipping of its crude oil and oil products while keeping the petroleum flowing to global markets.


Feb 23 - US crude stockpiles rise, products draw on low refining rates – EIA
U.S. crude oil stockpiles rose last week, while gasoline and distillate inventories fell as refinery maintenance and outages kept activity low, the Energy Information Administration said on Thursday. Crude inventories rose by 3.5 million barrels to 442.9 million barrels in the week ending Feb. 16, the EIA said, compared with analysts' expectations in a Reuters poll for a 3.9 million-barrel rise.

Feb 23 - US approves E15 gasoline sales expansion in Midwest starting 2025
The U.S. government said on Thursday it approved a request from Midwestern governors allowing expanded sales of gasoline with higher blends of ethanol in their states, starting in 2025. Reuters had exclusively reported the impending announcement earlier this week. The government currently restricts sales of E15 gasoline, or gasoline with 15% ethanol, in summer months due to environmental concerns over smog, though the biofuel industry says those concerns are unfounded.


Feb 22 - US oil refiners cut run-rates to lowest level in two years
U.S. oil refiners this quarter have extensive outages that will cut overall plant utilization rates to the lowest levels in the past two years, according to executive comments and analysts' forecasts. The industry has been running nearly full-bore since 2022 when travel and fuel demand rebounded from depressed COVID-19 levels. The high run-rates and relatively stable oil prices have been a boon for industry profits.

Feb 22 - Western Hemisphere oil output surges, with a helping hand from OPEC - Kemp
Oil producers in the Western Hemisphere have captured all the increase in global oil consumption over the last decade, reversing the previous trend towards production becoming concentrated in the Eastern Hemisphere. With consumption growth increasingly focused on the Eastern Hemisphere, the predominant east-to-west flow of crude oil and refined products across the oceans has been reversed, transforming the energy security picture.


Feb 21 - Biden administration to approve E15 gasoline expansion starting in 2025, sources say
The White House will approve a request from a group of Midwest governors to allow year-round sales of gasoline with higher blends of ethanol, but will push the start date into next year, two sources familiar with discussions said. The decision will likely be bittersweet for the biofuel industry, which wants to expand sales of corn-based ethanol but might be frustrated by the 2025 start date.

Feb 21 - Prompt US crude futures jump to steep premium over later-dated contracts
The premium for prompt U.S. crude futures to the second-month contract more than doubled on Tuesday, hitting a high of $1.90 a barrel - its widest level in roughly four months. The structure, known as backwardation, occurs when the front-month contract is at a premium to later-dated contracts and can indicate tightness in the market. It gives energy companies little incentive to pay to store their product for future months, but rather to sell while prices are firmer.


Feb 20 - Saudi crude exports dipped in December after three months of gains
Saudi Arabia's crude oil exports in December fell for the first time in four months, data from the Joint Organizations Data Initiative (JODI) showed on Monday. Crude exports from the world's largest oil exporter fell 0.4% to 6.308 million barrels per day (bpd), down from 6.336 million bpd in November.

Feb 20 - Some stranded Russian Sokol oil cargoes begin to move to China, India
Three tankers with Russian Sokol oil that had been stranded at sea due to payment problems and Western sanctions have started to move towards China and India, data from Kpler and LSEG showed on Monday. The backlog of Sokol tankers has become the biggest disruptions to Russia's oil trade since the West imposed sanctions on Moscow over its military actions in Ukraine.


Feb 19 - US refinery M&A stalls as buyers shun aging assets, uncertain future
The U.S. oil industry saw nearly $200 billion in upstream deals last year, but the refining sector missed out despite plenty of willing sellers as the energy transition away from fossil fuels accelerates and casts doubt over the long-term value of aging U.S. refineries. The growing number of operators looking to sell assets reflects the hope that a post-pandemic surge in margins - which for some products nearly quadrupled in 2022 - might have opened up a rare window to exit assets profitably.

Feb 19 - Second Trump presidency would axe Biden climate agenda, gut energy regulators
U.S. President Joe Biden has spent years implementing programs to fight climate change by advancing renewable energy and imposing tougher regulations on fossil fuels. Much of that work could go up in smoke if his likely rival Donald Trump beats him at the polls in November, according to Republican policy advisers.

Feb 16 - Oil demand growth slowing as non-OPEC supply expands, says IEA
Global oil demand growth is losing momentum, the International Energy Agency (IEA) said on Thursday as it trimmed its 2024 growth forecast, in sharp contrast to the view held by producer group OPEC. The IEA, which represents industrialised countries, has predicted that oil demand will peak by 2030 as the world shifts to cleaner energy. OPEC, meanwhile, expects oil use to keep rising for the next two decades.

Feb 16 - Going green at 50? IEA climate pivot debated at anniversary meeting
Energy ministers, oil executives and green investors gathered this week to mark a half-century since the formation of the International Energy Agency and to assess its new role as the world's shepherd toward a green future from a fossil fuel past. The industrialised world's energy watchdog has shifted its focus on traditional oil and gas supply security to championing renewables and climate action — and for some at the gathering, this undermines its role as an impartial energy authority.


Feb 15 - UK and Japan slip into recession (Reuters)

- Britain's economy fell into a recession in the second half of 2023, a tough backdrop for Prime Minister Rishi Sunak who has promised to boost growth ahead of an election expected later this year. The GDP contracted by a worse-than-expected 0.3% in the three months to December, official data showed.

- Britain is not alone. Japan also slipped into a recession at the end of last year, losing its title as the world's third-biggest economy to Germany and raising doubts about when the central bank would begin to exit its ultra-loose monetary policy. The GDP fell an annualized 0.4% in the October-December period.


Feb 15 - Oil majors rejigger portfolios with $30-per-barrel price in mind
Oil majors are targeting new oilfields that can be profitable even if oil prices fall to about $30 per barrel, using a third year of rising demand to reshape portfolios amid uncertainty over the industry's future. Investors have not returned to oil stocks despite recent high earnings. Even the world’s lowest-cost oil producer, Saudi Aramco, has joined the rush to cut costs.

Feb 15 - China-, US-led global refill of depleted oil stocks seen buoying demand
A push to replenish depleted oil stocks notably in China, the United States and Europe could buoy demand and prices in coming months, analysts and traders said, as tensions in the Middle East threaten key shipping lanes. Heavily depleted by supply disruptions wrought by sanctions on Russia in the middle of 2022, as well as protracted OPEC+ output cuts, global oil inventories have barely recovered with traders unable to justify the costs for storing oil.


Feb 14 - OPEC sticks to oil demand view, sees better economic growth
OPEC on Tuesday stuck to its forecast for relatively strong growth in global oil demand in 2024 and 2025 and raised its economic growth forecasts for both years saying there was further upside potential. The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries, in a monthly report, said world oil demand will rise by 2.25 million barrels per day (bpd) in 2024 and by 1.85 million bpd in 2025. Both forecasts were unchanged from last month.

Feb 14 - Why Endeavor Energy's founder sold his company after years of rebuffing offers
For years, Endeavor Energy founder Autry Stephens' refusal to entertain acquisition offers for one of the most lucrative producers in the U.S. oil patch vexed some of his peers. "It's not for sale, it hasn't been for sale, it's probably not going to ever sell," Pioneer Natural Resources' former CEO Scott Sheffield, a contemporary of Stephens, told a Barclays energy conference in 2021 about his interest in buying Endeavor.


Feb 13 - Saudi Aramco starts trading US crude that helps set Brent oil benchmark
Saudi state oil company Aramco has started trading a U.S. crude oil grade that underpins the global Brent benchmark in a process run by oil-index publisher S&P Global Commodity Insights, the publisher said on Monday. Aramco, the world's largest oil company, has been expanding its trading activity. The company could not immediately be reached for comment on Monday after Saudi business hours.

Feb 13 - US oil output from top shale regions to rise in March - EIA
U.S. oil output from top shale-producing regions will rise in March to its highest in four months, the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) said on Monday in its monthly Drilling Productivity Report. Production from the top basins will rise by nearly 20,000 barrels per day (bpd) to 9.7 million bpd, its highest since December, the EIA said.


Feb 12  - Diamondback, Endeavor Energy in talks to create $50 billion company, sources say
U.S. shale oil rivals Diamondback Energy and Endeavor Energy Resources are close to finalizing a roughly $25 billion cash-and-stock deal that would create an oil and gas company valued at more than $50 billion, sources said on Sunday. Diamondback could announce a transaction as soon as Monday that would give its shareholders more than half of the combined companies, the people said, which would become the largest, pure-play oil producer in the Permian shale field.

Feb 12  - Premium of US oil over natgas hits 11-year high on natgas price plunge
The collapse of U.S. natural gas prices this week elevated the oil-to-gas ratio to its highest since May 2012, which should prompt energy firms to drill for more oil and less gas. Gas prices collapsed to a three-year low for a third day in a row on Friday, having fallen by 28% so far this year, on near record output and as mostly warmer-than-normal weather this winter depressed demand for heating.


Feb 09 - US oil refiners beat Wall Street bets, expect demand to grow in 2024
Major U.S. fuelmakers beat Wall Street's earnings expectations in the fourth quarter on strong refining margins and operating performance, and they predicted profits would rise again this year thanks to global demand growth. For 2023, three of the biggest U.S. independent refiners - Marathon Petroleum, Phillips 66, and Valero Energy - posted combined adjusted earnings of $25.7 billion. While that beat forecasts, it was down from combined profits of $33.9 billion in 2022, when market disruptions from sanctions on Russia's energy industry drove record earnings.

Feb 09 - Russia's refinery damage casts doubt on OPEC+ supply cut commitments
Damage to refineries from drone attacks and technical outages led Russia to export more crude than it planned in February, potentially undermining its pledge to curb sales under an OPEC+ pact. Under the deal with the OPEC+ group of leading oil producers Russia is capping its crude oil production at 9.5 million barrels per day (bpd). It is also voluntarily reducing exports of crude oil and fuel by 300,000 bpd and 200,000 bpd of fuel respectively from the average May-June level.


Feb 08 - Big Oil offers record returns to lure investors back
Big Oil firms are handing shareholders more money than ever and are promising more going forward in an attempt to reassure investors of their discipline and resilience in the face of an uncertain outlook for fossil fuels. The top five Western oil and gas firms -BP, Chevron, Exxon Mobil, Shell and TotalEnergies - returned to shareholders over $111 billion in dividends and share repurchases in 2023, according to Reuters calculation.

Feb 08 - U.S. Permian deal frenzy dims U.S. oil output growth prospects for 2024
Oil production in the prodigious Permian shale basin in Texas and New Mexico this year will see the slowest annual growth since 2021, according to market participants, as a slew of acquisitions reduces activity among private drillers. Reduced growth in the Permian, the largest U.S. oilfield, will be a drag on overall gains in U.S. production. The slowdown comes even as output cuts from the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries and allies (OPEC+) have supported prices, giving an incentive for non-OPEC+ producers to pump more.


Feb 07 - Growth in US crude production to slow sharply in 2024, EIA says
The U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) on Tuesday cut its forecast for domestic oil growth in 2024 by 120,000 barrels per day (bpd) to 170,000 bpd, sharply lower than last year's output increase of 1.02 million bpd. U.S. crude oil production will rise to 13.21 million barrels per day (bpd) this year, the EIA said in its Short-Term Energy Outlook (STEO). It had previously projected that crude production would rise this year by 290,000 bpd.

Feb 07 - US crude oil exports to Asia dip in January on high freight rates
U.S. crude oil exports to Asia tumbled to 1 million barrels per day in January, the lowest in over two years as high freight rates and more competitively-priced Middle Eastern oils slashed shipments. A surge in supertanker freight rates made it expensive to ship to Asia at the start of the month, particularly to China.


Feb 06 - Saudi Arabia keeps Arab Light crude price to Asia unchanged in surprise move
Top oil exporter Saudi Arabia unexpectedly kept March price of its flagship Arab Light crude to Asia unchanged at a more than two-year low, an Aramco statement showed on Tuesday, as the OPEC leader strives to maintain its market share. Saudi Aramco set the official selling price (OSP) for March-loading Arab Light to Asia at $1.50 a barrel over the Oman/Dubai average, same level as the previous month. The state oil giant made its biggest cut on the OSP in 13 months for February cargoes to a 27-month low amid competition from rival suppliers.

Feb 06 - Exxon shareholder proposal withdrawal may end lawsuit: judge
Exxon Mobil told a federal judge on Monday that the lawsuit it filed against two shareholder activists should continue even after the groups withdrew a climate resolution, as the largest U.S. energy company tried to keep the suit going despite a skeptical comment from the court. Exxon's filing came in response to an order issued on Friday in which U.S. District Judge Mark Pittman told Exxon to file a status update "on or before" Monday as to what claims or issues remain before the court.


Feb 05 - Venezuela's January oil exports fell 25% amid outages at terminal
Venezuela's exports of crude and refined products fell by 25% in January to some 624,000 barrels per day (bpd) as power outages hit the main oil export terminal, according to vessel tracking data and internal documents from state oil firm PDVSA. The U.S. this week said it would reimpose energy sanctions in April if President Nicolas Maduro's administration does not stick to a deal to accept conditions for a fair presidential election. Analysts said this would hurt the country's ability to collect cash from its crude exports.

Feb 05 - Exxon pursues lawsuit despite activist investor climb-down
Exxon Mobil said Friday it will continue to pursue a lawsuit against two activist investors even after they withdrew a shareholder proposal on climate change, setting up a clash over what constitutes legitimate debate between a public company and its owners. Exxon had taken the rare step in January of filing the lawsuit to block the shareholder measure from being voted on at its annual meeting.


Feb 02 - OPEC+ to review oil cut extension in March, ministers leave policy unchanged
OPEC+ will decide in March whether or not to extend voluntary oil production cuts in place for the first quarter, two OPEC+ sources said on Thursday after a ministerial panel meeting made no changes to the group's output policy. Last November, OPEC+ agreed to voluntary output cuts totalling about 2.2 million barrels per day (bpd) for the first quarter of this year led by Saudi Arabia rolling over a 1 million bpd voluntary reduction.

Feb 02 - Power loss forces BP to shut biggest US Midwest refinery
BP was purging its 435,000 barrel-per-day (bpd) Whiting, Indiana, refinery of hydrocarbons on Thursday after a transformer failure caused a plant-wide power outage and forced an evacuation of all but the most essential workers, said people familiar with plant operations. It is not yet clear how long it will take BP to restart the refinery, which is the company's largest in North America and the biggest in the Midwest, said the two sources, who were not authorized to speak publicly.


Feb 01 - Shell's 2023 profit falls 30% to $28 billion, dividend boosted
Shell reported a 2023 profit of $28 billion, down 30% from the previous year's record as oil and gas prices cooled, still allowing the firm to increase its dividend by 4% and extend its share repurchases. Shell posted fourth-quarter adjust earnings, its definition of net profit, of $7.3 billion, exceeding analysts' expectations of $6 billion profit but down from a record $9.8 billion a year earlier.

Feb 01 - Russian oil flows through Red Sea still face lower risks
Tankers carrying Russian oil have continued sailing through the Red Sea largely uninterrupted by Houthi attacks on shipping and face lower risks than competitors, according to shipping executives, analysts and flows data. Russia has become more dependent on trade through the Suez Canal and the Red Sea since it invaded Ukraine, which led to Europe imposing sanctions on Russian imports and forced Moscow to export most of its crude to China and India. Before the war, Russia exported more to Europe.


Jan 31 - Saudi Arabia orders Aramco to lower oil capacity target
Saudi Arabia's government on Tuesday ordered state oil company Aramco to halt its oil expansion plan and to target a maximum sustained production capacity of 12 million barrels per day (bpd), 1 million bpd below a target announced in 2020. Saudi Arabia for decades has been the main holder of the world's only significant spare oil capacity, providing a safety cushion for global supplies in case of major disruptions caused by conflict or natural disasters.

Jan 31 - Return of US oil sanctions on Venezuela to hit revenue, fuel imports
A reimposition of U.S. sanctions on Venezuela's oil and gas sectors would hurt the OPEC country's ability to collect cash from its oil exports, crimp new energy investments and raise the risks of domestic fuel scarcity, analysts and executives said. Washington this week ordered a wind down of all business transactions between U.S entities and Venezuela's state miner Minerven, and said it would unwind in April its easing of energy sanctions if President Nicolas Maduro's administration does not stick to an agreement signed last year to accept conditions for a fair presidential election.


Jan 30 - Russia's Urals oil rises above $60 Western price cap as Brent strengthens
Russia's Urals oil price rose above the $60 a barrel cap imposed by Western nations on Monday as Brent climbed, while freight rates were relatively soft despite new U.S. sanctions and rising tensions in the Red Sea, traders said and Reuters calculations showed. The U.S., other Group of Seven (G7) countries and Australia imposed the cap last year, seeking to reduce Russia's revenue from seaborne oil exports as part of sanctions prompted by its invasion of Ukraine.

Jan 30 - California and Big Oil are splitting after century-long affair
It is the end of an era for Big Oil in California, as the most populous U.S. state divorces itself from fossil fuels in its fight against climate change. The two largest U.S. oil producers, Exxon Mobil and Chevron, will formally disclose a combined $5 billion writedown of California assets when they report fourth-quarter results.


Jan 29 - Trafigura assesses Red Sea risks after tanker attacked by Houthis
Commodities trader Trafigura said on Saturday it was assessing the security risks of further Red Sea voyages after firefighters put out a blaze on a tanker attacked by Yemen's Houthi group a day earlier. The U.S. military said a U.S. Navy ship and other vessels provided assistance after the Marlin Luanda was hit by a Houthi anti-ship missile.

Jan 29 - OPEC+ unlikely to decide oil policy on Feb 1, will wait several weeks
OPEC+ will likely decide its oil production levels for April and beyond in the coming weeks, OPEC+ sources said, adding that a meeting of a key ministerial panel next Thursday would take place too early to take decisions on further output policy. Leading ministers from the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) and allies led by Russia, known as OPEC+, will meet online.


Jan 26 - Ukrainian drones hit Rosneft refinery in Russia
Ukrainian drones attacked a Rosneft-owned oil refinery in southern Russia in the latest such strike on Russian energy infrastructure, a Ukrainian source said on Thursday. Local officials in Russia said there was a fire overnight at the export-oriented unit in the town of Tuapse, but it was extinguished.

Jan 26 - Valero Energy's Q4 profit beat Wall Street estimates
Refiner Valero Energy's fourth quarter earnings beat Wall Street estimates on better than expected results from refining and ethanol production, the company said on Thursday. Overall results in the fourth quarter of 2023 fell. Results pulled back from record levels touched in 2022 following Russia's invasion of Ukraine.


Jan 25 - US crude stockpiles slump, gasoline builds amid winter storms - EIA
U.S. crude oil stockpiles slumped while gasoline inventories jumped last week after winter weather hit crude production and imports, refining, and demand for fuel, the Energy Information Administration said on Wednesday. Crude inventories fell by 9.2 million barrels to 420.7 million barrels in the week ending Jan. 19, the EIA said, compared with analysts' expectations in a Reuters poll for a 2.1 million-barrel draw.

Jan 25 - IEA to expedite 2025 oil demand forecast after OPEC's early move
The International Energy Agency plans to bring forward publication of its first 2025 oil demand forecast in its monthly report by two or three months to April, the agency told Reuters, after OPEC expedited its forecast by six months. "We plan to publish the 2025 forecast in April as opposed to June/July previously," Toril Bosoni, head of the IEA's Oil Industry and Markets Division, told Reuters in response to an emailed question.


Jan 24 - Halliburton tops profit estimates, upbeat on overseas growth
Halliburton beat quarterly profit expectations on Tuesday, helped by strength in its drilling and evaluation business, especially in overseas markets, sending its shares up more than 2%. With a better economic environment and acreages internationally, oilfield services are setting their sights outside the United States to grow, with the North American segment dominated by higher efficiencies but fewer wells.

Jan 24 - US oil and gas dealmaking reaches fever-pitch in 2023, Enverus says
Blockbuster takeovers by oil and gas majors pushed the value of U.S. energy dealmaking last year to a record $192 billion, more than triple the amount in 2022, according to data from analytics firms Enverus on Tuesday. Acquisitions in the Permian shale basin straddling West Texas and New Mexico, the largest U.S. oilfield, soared in the last two years as oil prices jumped on strong demand after Russia's invasion of Ukraine and producers sought producing wells to guarantee future supplies.


Jan 23 - Sunoco to buy NuStar Energy in $7.3 billion deal
Sunoco said on Monday it would acquire fuels storage and pipeline operator NuStar Energy in a deal valued at about $7.3 billion including debt, as it tries to diversify its core business beyond distribution of motor fuels. The equity portion of the deal comes up to $2.99 billion, and NuStar's shareholders stand to receive 0.400 of a Sunoco share for each NuStar unit they hold, valuing Sunoco's shares at $23.78. That represents a premium of 31.9% to NuStar's last closing price.

Jan 23 - Saudi Arabia's November crude exports hit 5-month high
Saudi Arabia's crude oil exports in November climbed to their highest level in five months and marked a third straight rise, data from the Joint Organizations Data Initiative showed on Monday. Crude exports from the world's largest oil exporter rose 0.6% to 6.336 million barrels per day (bpd) from 6.297 million bpd in October.


Jan 22 - Russia suspends operations at fuel export terminal after suspected Ukrainian drone attack
Russian energy company Novatek said on Sunday it had been forced to suspend some operations at a huge Baltic Sea fuel export terminal due to a fire started by what Ukrainian media said was a drone attack. The giant Ust-Luga complex, located on the Gulf of Finland about 170 km (110 miles) west of St. Petersburg, is used to ship oil and gas products to international markets.

Jan 22 - Europe, Africa crude market tightens on Red Sea disruptions, China demand
The Brent crude market structure and some physical markets in Europe and Africa are reflecting tighter supply resulting partly from concern about shipping delays due to vessels avoiding the Red Sea, according to traders, LSEG data and analysts. The disruptions have combined with other factors such as outages and rising Chinese demand to increase competition for crude supply that does not have to transit the Suez Canal, and analysts say this is most evident in European markets.


Jan 19 - Two diverted oil tankers enter Red Sea but disruptions continue
Two oil tankers that had diverted away from the Red Sea have turned back and passed through the Bab al-Mandab Strait, ship-tracking data shows, though tensions in the region continued to disrupt global shipping and trade. The vessels' return, as tracked by LSEG and Kpler, comes nearly a week after the United States and Britain launched strikes against Houthi positions in Yemen in retaliation for the militant group's protracted attacks on commercial shipping since November.

Jan 19 - US crude stockpiles fall more than expected on strong refiner demand - EIA
U.S. crude oil stockpiles fell more than expected last week on strong demand from refineries, while gasoline and distillate inventories rose to multi-year highs, the Energy Information Administration said on Thursday. Crude inventories fell by 2.5 million barrels to 429.9 million barrels in the week ended Jan. 12, the EIA said, compared with analysts' expectations in a Reuters poll for a 313,000-barrel draw.


Jan 18 - In first look at 2025, OPEC expects robust oil demand growth
OPEC on Wednesday stuck to its forecast for relatively strong growth in global oil demand in 2024 and said 2025 will see a robust increase in oil use, led by China and the Middle East, in a surprise early prediction. The 2025 forecast is in line with the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries' view oil use will keep rising for the next two decades, in contrast to bodies such as the International Energy Agency, which predicts it will peak by 2030 as the world shifts to cleaner energy.

Jan 18 - IEA's Birol predicts 'comfortable' oil market despite Red Sea disruption
The IEA expects oil markets to be in a "comfortable and balanced position" this year, despite Middle East tensions amid a rising supply and slowing demand growth outlook, its executive director Fatih Birol told the Reuters Global Markets Forum on Wednesday. "If we don't see any major geopolitical surprises, I expect this year a comfortable oil market, a more balanced oil market," the International Energy Agency's Birol said on the sidelines of the WEF's annual meeting in Davos.


Jan 17 - Deep freeze hits US oil industry from North Dakota to Texas
A severe winter storm shut a U.S. Gulf Coast refinery in Texas on Tuesday, triggered malfunctions at others and halved North Dakota oil production as it dumped snow and rain across a broad swath of the nation. TotalEnergies' 238,000 barrel-per-day refinery in Port Arthur, Texas, was examining units after a plantwide power outage on Tuesday morning as a winter storm brought frigid temperatures to the U.S. Gulf Coast, sources familiar with the company's operations said.

Jan 17 - BP names Auchincloss permanent CEO
BP on Wednesday named Murray Auchincloss permanent CEO, four months after he was given the interim job following the sudden resignation of Bernard Looney over undisclosed relationships with employees. Auchincloss, who headed BP's finances under Looney, indicated he will continue a strategy aimed at slashing carbon emissions, building up its renewables and clean fuel capacity and cutting oil and gas output by 2030.


Jan 16 - More oil tankers shun southern Red Sea after US-led strikes in Yemen
At least six more oil tankers were steering clear of the southern Red Sea on Monday, as disruptions increase on the vital route for energy shipping in the wake of U.S.-led strikes against Houthi targets in Yemen. Following the U.S. and British strikes, the U.S.-led Combined Maritime Forces based in Bahrain on Friday warned all ships to avoid the Bab al-Mandab Strait at the south end of the Red Sea for several days, tanker body INTERTANKO said.

Jan 16 - Russia's NORSI refinery may halve high-octane gasoline output after outages – sources
Lukoil's NORSI oil refinery in Nizhny Novgorod may halve high-octane gasoline output after an emergency stoppage at one of two plant's catalytic cracking unit, industry sources said on Monday. Russian news agencies later issued contradictory reports on Russian authorities' response to the incident at Lukoil's plant.


Jan 15 - Trans Mountain oil pipeline change approved by Canadian regulator
The Canada Energy Regulator on Friday approved a request for a change in construction for the final stretch of the Trans Mountain oil pipeline expansion project, clearing the path for its completion early this year. The C$30.9-billion expansion will nearly triple the flow of crude on Trans Mountain from Alberta to Canada's Pacific Coast but has been plagued by years of delays and cost overruns.

Jan 15 - North Dakota oil output off by up to 280,000 bpd due to cold weather - Pipeline Authority
North Dakota oil production has fallen by an estimated 250,000 to 280,000 barrels per day due to freezing weather, while natural gas output in the state declined by 700 million to 800 million cubic feet per day, the North Dakota Pipeline Authority estimated on Sunday. An Arctic blast is blanketing much of the United States, driving up power demand but also straining supplies as frigid temperatures curtail some oil and gas production. Power and gas supply disruptions have already occurred in parts of the country, including an outage on a natural gas pipeline in the Northwest over the weekend.


Jan 12 - Iran seizes oil tanker involved in U.S.-Iran dispute in Gulf of Oman
Iran seized a tanker with Iraqi crude destined for Turkey on Thursday in retaliation for the confiscation last year of the same vessel and its oil by the U.S., Iranian state media reported, a move likely to stoke regional tensions. The seizure of the Marshall Islands-flagged St Nikolas coincides with weeks of attacks by Yemen's Iran-backed Houthi militias targeting Red Sea shipping routes.

Jan 12 - China's 2023 crude oil imports hit record as fuel demand recovers
China's annual crude oil imports hit an all-time high in 2023, customs data showed, as fuel demand recovered from a pandemic-induced slump despite economic headwinds. China imported 11% more crude oil last year versus 2022 at 563.99 million metric tons, equivalent to 11.28 million barrels per day, up from a previous record of 10.81 million bpd in 2020, data from the General Administration of Customs showed.


Jan 11 - US oil stockpiles rise more than forecast, distillates build to Sept 2021 high
U.S. crude oil stockpiles rose unexpectedly last week and fuel inventories grew by more than expected, with distillates building to their highest level in over two years, the Energy Information Administration said on Wednesday. Crude inventories rose by 1.3 million barrels in the week ended Jan. 5 to 432.4 million barrels, the EIA said, compared with analysts' expectations in a Reuters poll for a 700,000-barrel drop.

Jan 11 - Surging tanker rates close the door on US crude oil shipments to Asia
The economic incentive to import oil from the U.S. Gulf Coast to Asia has closed as the cost of booking supertankers on the route has surged amid a jump in bookings for the vessels, traders said this week. With the arbitrage for U.S. shipments closed, Asian refiners may make up some of the difference with similar Middle Eastern crude oil after top regional producer Saudi Arabia cut their sales prices for February, which is expected to carry over to other regional crudes.


Jan 10 - US oil output to touch a record high in 2024, but growth will slow - EIA
U.S. crude production will hit records over the next two years but grow at a slower rate, the U.S. Energy Information Administration said on Tuesday, as efficiency gains offset a decline in rig activity. The rise in U.S. output comes as the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries and its allies are cutting their own output in a bid to boost oil prices.

Jan 10 - Indian refiners set to ask for extra Saudi oil after sharp price cut
Two Indian state refiners are seeking to boost imports of Saudi crude oil after the kingdom cut the official selling price of its key export grade for February to the lowest in 27 months, company sources said. Indian Oil, the country's top refiner, and Bharat Petroleum, are looking at lifting an additional 1 million barrels of oil each from Saudi Aramco in February, the sources said.


Jan 09 - US judge clears way for more Venezuela creditors to join Citgo auction
A U.S. judge on Monday granted a large group of Venezuela-linked creditors rights to participate and receive proceeds from a coming auction of shares in the parent of Houston-based refiner Citgo Petroleum. A precedent-setting lawsuit by Canadian miner Crystallex Corp formally tied Venezuela-owned Citgo to the South American country's debts and opened the door to some $24 billion in claims being applied to the refining firm through an auction of shares in a Citgo parent whose only asset is the oil refiner.

Jan 09 - Oil tankers continue Red Sea movements despite Houthi attacks
Oil and fuel tanker traffic in the Red Sea was stable in December, even though many container ships have rerouted due to attacks by Iran-aligned Houthi militants, a Reuters analysis of vessel tracking data showed. The attacks have driven up shipping costs sharply along with insurance premiums, but have had less impact than feared on oil flows, with shippers continuing to use the key East-West passage.

Jan 08 - Saudi Arabia cuts Feb Arab Light crude price to Asia to 27-month low
Top oil exporter Saudi Arabia on Sunday cut the February price of its flagship Arab Light crude to Asian customers to the lowest level in 27 months, a company statement showed, amid competition from rival suppliers and concerns about supply overhang. Saudi Aramco slashed the official selling price (OSP) for February-loading Arab Light to Asia by $2 a barrel from January to $1.50 a barrel over Oman/Dubai quotes, a level last seen for November 2021.

Jan 08 - Iran's oil trade with China stalls as Tehran demands higher prices
China's oil trade with Iran has stalled as Tehran withholds shipments and demands higher prices from its top client, tightening cheap supply for the world's biggest crude importer, refinery and trade sources said. The cutback in Iranian oil, which makes up some 10% of China's crude imports and hit a record in October, could support global prices and squeeze profits at Chinese refiners.

Jan 05 - US fuel inventories surge as refiners boost runs, post holiday lull
U.S. gasoline and distillate inventories posted large builds last week as demand slipped, while crude stocks fell more than expected, the Energy Information Administration said on Thursday, news that sank prices for crude, gasoline and heating oil. U.S. gasoline stocks rose by 10.9 million barrels, the largest build since May 1993, to 237 million barrels in the week to Dec 29, the EIA said, compared with analysts' expectations in a Reuters poll for a 215,000 barrel drop.

Jan 05 - APA to acquire rival Callon Petroleum in $4.5 billion deal
U.S. oil producer APA said on Thursday it was buying rival Callon Petroleum in an all-stock transaction valued at $4.5 billion including debt, following on the heels of a record year for dealmaking in the largest U.S. shale field. Callon's assets will add heft to APA's operations in the Permian shale basin of West Texas and New Mexico, with about 145,000 drilling acres that puts nearly 64% of APA's production in the United States.


Jan 04 - Venezuela's 2023 oil exports rose, aided by US sanctions easing
Venezuela's oil exports increased 12% last year to almost 700,000 barrels per day (bpd) as the United States eased sanctions imposed since 2019 on the OPEC country's energy sector, according to data and documents viewed by Reuters. The increase shows the impact of sanctions relaxation on the country's oil exports, and the degree to which further gains could remain limited by the need for stable policies and capital to rebuild Venezuela's crude production, which rose at a slower rate than exports last year.

Jan 04 - OPEC+ promises unity as group plans monitoring meeting
OPEC said on Wednesday cooperation and dialogue within the wider OPEC+ producer alliance will continue, after OPEC member Angola last month said it would quit, and that it plans a Feb. 1 meeting to review implementation of its latest oil output cut. Continued cooperation within the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries and allies such as Russia will benefit "all producers, consumers and investors, as well as the global economy at large," OPEC said in a statement.


Jan 03 - Saudi Arabia may cut Feb Arab Light price premium to one-year low
Saudi Arabia may slash price premiums on all crude grades it sells to Asia in February to one-year-lows despite the escalation of tensions in the Red Sea, as concerns intensify that supply may outpace demand. The world's top oil exporter could cut the official selling price (OSP) for its flagship Arab Light crude over Oman/Dubai crude quotes by about $1.70 a barrel in February from the previous month, according to five refining sources surveyed by Reuters, which would be the grade's lowest premium in a year.

Jan 03 - OPEC+ set to hold monitoring meeting in early February
OPEC+ plans to hold a meeting of its Joint Ministerial Monitoring Committee in early February, though an exact date has not been decided, three sources from the alliance said. OPEC+, which comprises the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries and allies led by Russia, usually holds such meetings every two months to monitor the implementation of its production agreements.


Jan 02 - China issues 2024 crude import quotas, 60% more than year earlier – trade
China has released 179.01 million metric tons of crude import quotas for 2024, according to Chinese industry consultancies and trade sources on Tuesday, 60% more than the previous year. Fourty-one companies, mostly independent refiners, were given the fresh quotas, with some of them allotted full-year allowances, trade sources and consultancy JLC and Longzhong said. The quota issued in January last year was 111.82 million tons.

Jan 02 - ExxonMobil hands over operations at West Qurna 1 oilfield to PetroChina
U.S. energy giant ExxonMobil Corp has formally exited the West Qurna 1 oilfield in southern Iraq and handed over its operations to PetroChina as lead contractor, a deputy oil minister told Reuters on Monday. Senior Iraqi oil officials met with executives from ExxonMobil, PetroChina and Basra Oil Co on Monday at the West Qurna 1 field near Basra to mark Exxon's complete exit and the handover of its operations to PetroChina.