Energy News

Aug 21 - Glencore, BP stuck with tainted Russian crude 
BP and Glencore are struggling to sell around 600,000 tonnes of tainted Russian oil more than three months after the contamination was discovered, according to six trading sources. Russia's oil industry was plunged into a crisis in April after about 5 million tonnes of oil for export was found to be contaminated with organic chloride, a chemical used to help boost oil extraction but which can damage refining equipment.

Aug 21 - Trump White House seeks to assuage farmer unrest over biofuel policy - sources
President Donald Trump's administration has been scrambling to stem the tide of rising anger in Farm Belt states after its decision this month to allow numerous oil refiners to mix less ethanol into their gasoline, sources told Reuters on Tuesday. Trump held a two-hour meeting on Monday with members of his Cabinet after hearing blowback from farmers after the decision to grant exemptions from the nation's biofuel laws to 31 refineries, two sources familiar with the discussions said. Trump's re-election campaign team also took notice of Democratic presidential candidates seizing on the unrest, the sources said.

Aug 21 - China's petrochemical expansion to overwhelm Japan, S.Korea producers 
A massive surge in China's manufacturing capacity for paraxylene, a petrochemical used to make textile fibres and bottles, could force leading exporters in Japan and South Korea to cut production as early as the second quarter of 2020. China will add about 10 million tones of paraxylene manufacturing capacity from March 2019 to March 2020, according to company reports and officials, that is enough for making 22 trillion 500-millilitre plastic bottles.

Aug 21 - First U.S. crude cargo offered on Platts trade platform for Asia - sources 
Oil major Royal Dutch Shell has offered a U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) Midland crude cargo for delivery in October in S&P Global Platts' widely used trading platform for Asian buyers, several traders said on Tuesday. The 1 million-barrel cargo was offered from oil tanker Mt Phoenix Jamnagar at a premium of $4.55 a barrel to Dubai quotes on an ex-ship basis to Singapore, Linggi in Malaysia or Nipah in Indonesia, the traders said, but it attracted no interest.

Aug 21 - U.S. will act if Iranian tanker tries to deliver oil to Syria - Pompeo
The United States will take every action it can to prevent an Iranian tanker sailing in the Mediterranean from delivering oil to Syria in contravention of U.S. sanctions, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo warned on Tuesday. Greece said earlier in the day that it had not had a request from the Adrian Darya 1, the vessel at the centre of a dispute between Iran and the United States, to dock at one of its ports, as Washington warned Greece against helping the vessel.

Aug 21 - Oil market starts to rebalance at lower prices: Kemp
Global oil consumption is falling at the fastest rate for almost five years as manufacturing activity and trade flows slip around the world and vehicle production tumbles. Demand in the top 18 consuming countries, each using more than 1 million barrels per day (bpd), fell by almost 0.2% in the three months between March and May compared with the same period a year earlier.

Aug 21 - U.S. oil firms challenge pipeline surcharge for steel tariff 
Two U.S. shale producers have challenged an energy pipeline operator's proposed surcharge for the Trump administration's 25% tariff on imported steel, raising the stakes for pipeline builders facing higher construction costs. The United States imposed tariffs on imported steel and aluminum last year to shield U.S. producers from overseas competition. U.S. energy industry trade groups have warned the tariffs could raise costs for companies and consumers.

Aug 20 - Climate change could rain on Saudi Aramco's IPO parade
Saudi Aramco's biggest asset could also be a liability. The state energy giant's vast oil reserves – it can sustain current production levels for the next 50 years – make it more exposed than any other company to a rising tide of environmental activism and shift away from fossil fuels.

Aug 20 - China CNPC suspends Venezuelan oil loading, worried about U.S. sanctions - sources
China National Petroleum Corp, a leading buyer of Venezuelan oil, has halted August loadings following the latest U.S. sanctions on the South American exporter, three sources with direct knowledge of the matter told Reuters on Monday. The Trump administration in early August froze all Venezuelan government assets in the United States and U.S. officials ratcheted up threats against companies that do business with Venezuela's state-run oil company, Petróleos de Venezuela, S.A., or PDVSA. 

Aug 20 - U.S. crude export window slams shut as new pipelines start
Two long-awaited pipelines out of the busiest U.S. shale patch started shipping oil to Gulf Coast export hubs last week - just as U.S. crude barrels suddenly do not look all that attractive to buyers around the world. The two lines, which run from Texas' Permian region to the U.S. Gulf Coast, alleviate bottlenecks that prevented oil from getting to the coast amid a surge in U.S. exports. 

Aug 20 - Iran tanker heads to Greece, U.S. warns against helping vessel
An Iranian tanker at the centre of an angry confrontation between Iran and Washington sailed for Greece on Monday after it was freed from detention off Gibraltar, as Washington called the release unfortunate and warned Greece and Mediterranean ports against helping the vessel. Tehran said any U.S. move to seize the vessel again would have "heavy consequences". 

Aug 20 - Hedge funds sell oil as global economy slows: Kemp
Hedge funds cut their bullish positions in petroleum last week for the second week running as anxiety about the slowing global economy and oil consumption trumped optimism over production restraint by OPEC and its allies. Hedge funds and other money managers reduced their net long position in the six major petroleum futures and options contracts by 35 million barrels in the week to Aug. 13, having cut it by 25 million barrels the previous week.

Aug 20 - Equinor, Gazprom lose European gas market share as LNG surges
Europe's two biggest suppliers of pipeline gas, Norway's Equinor and Russia's Gazprom, have lost market share for the first time in at least four years amid a tripling in liquefied natural gas (LNG) imports into the region over the past 10 months. LNG imports into Europe have jumped amid lower than expected spot demand from Asia, which has helped to send European gas prices to 10-year lows and filled European storages to multi-year highs.

Aug 19 - Iranian tanker caught in a standoff with the West heads to Greece, shipping data shows
The Iranian tanker caught in a standoff between Tehran and the West was sailing to Greece on Monday after leaving Gibraltar, shipping data showed, hours after the British territory rejected a U.S. request to detain the vessel further. British Royal Marines seized the tanker near Gibraltar in July on suspicion it was carrying oil to Syria, a close ally of Iran, in violation of European Union sanctions.

Aug 19 - China CNPC suspends Venezuelan oil loading, worried about U.S. sanctions - sources
China National Petroleum Corp, a leading buyer of Venezuelan oil, has halted August loadings following the latest set of U.S. sanctions on the South American exporter, two Beijing-based senior sources with direct knowledge of the matter told Reuters on Monday. The Trump administration in early August froze all Venezuelan government assets in the United States and U.S. officials ratcheted up threats against companies that do business with Venezuela.

Aug 19 - OPEC sees bearish oil outlook for rest of 2019, points to 2020 surplus
OPEC delivered a downbeat oil market outlook for the rest of 2019 on Friday as economic growth slows and highlighted challenges in 2020 as rivals pump more, building a case to keep up an OPEC-led pact to curb supply. In a monthly report, the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries cut its forecast for global oil demand growth in 2019 by 40,000 barrels per day (bpd) to 1.10 million bpd and indicated the market will be in slight surplus in 2020.

Aug 19 - Trump intervention triggered EPA's surprise biofuel waiver decision - sources
A phone call from U.S. President Donald Trump last week ended a nearly two-month-long review of the nation's biofuels program, three sources familiar with the matter said, with the White House siding in favor of oil refiners over corn growers. Trump gave Andrew Wheeler, head of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, the green light for the regulator to announce it had granted 31 small refinery exemptions out of the 40 applications, saying he wanted the issue off his desk, the sources said.

Aug 19 - Weak spot LNG prices don't help Asia much, but boost Europe: Russell
The price of spot cargoes of liquefied natural gas (LNG) has ticked up recently in Asia amid tentative signs of some peak summer demand, but the problem remains that for many buyers the cost is still too high. While the market focuses on the spot price as a way of assessing the extent of oversupply, or the strength of demand, it's worth noting that the market for short-term cargoes is dwarfed by the far greater volumes procured under long-term, mainly crude oil-linked contracts.

Aug 19 - Hedge funds raise bullish bets on U.S. crude - CFTC
Hedge funds and other money managers raised their bullish wagers on U.S. crude in the latest week as oil futures soared on improved demand outlook after the U.S. delayed tariffs on Chinese goods, a weekly government report showed on Friday. The speculator group raised its combined futures and options position in New York and London by 29,981 contracts to 199,563 during the week ended August 13, the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) said on Friday.

Aug 19 - PES up against the clock to sell Philadelphia refinery in cash crunch
Finding a buyer for Philadelphia Energy Solutions' oil refinery has grown urgent as the bankrupt company's funds dwindle and no signs emerge that it is winning a fight for insurance payouts after a June blaze at the plant, according to court documents and bankruptcy experts. Without access to the more than $1 billion in insurance coverage, selling the refinery has become one of the company's only options to raise cash before being forced to liquidate.

Aug 19 - Dirty shipping fuel margins plunge as cleaner fuel rules loom
Margins for European high sulphur fuel oil (HSFO), used to power ships, sank this week as preparations for a global shift to cleaner maritime fuel next year start to weigh on prices. High sulphur fuel oil is one of the dirtiest and cheapest products to come out of a refinery. It is used in power generation but has been the fuel of choice in global shipping for decades.

Aug 19 - Bid for Inter Pipeline highlights Canada's oil sector bright spot
A recent unsolicited bid for Inter Pipeline Ltd has highlighted the potential of Canada's midstream companies to offer insulation from volatile oil prices. Inter Pipeline, Pembina Pipeline Corp and Keyera Corp own key infrastructure such as gathering pipelines, gas-processing plants and storage tanks that are in high demand, and reported record second quarter profits.

Aug 16 - Iran tanker can leave when ready, U.S. legal block still looms - Gibraltar 
An Iranian tanker detained in Gibraltar for breaching EU sanctions could be allowed to leave on Friday, though a last minute U.S. legal bid to halt it could yet end up back in court, the territory's first minister said. Gibraltar decided on Thursday to free the tanker, but did not immediately indicate when or if the ship would set sail after the United States launched a last-minute legal bid to hold it.

Aug 16 - Venezuela's congress to consider new, scaled-back oil reform 
Venezuela's opposition-controlled congress is considering reforms to the country's oil law that would open up the sector to private investment but are scaled back from the sweeping changes outlined in a past proposal, according to a draft of the bill seen by Reuters. The proposal would allow private companies to hold majority stakes in upstream joint ventures with state oil company PDVSA, with the ability to directly export crude. The changes address issues that have limited companies' profitability since late President Hugo Chavez created the joint venture model in 2007.

Aug 16 - EPIC Midstream ships first crude on new Permian line to Gulf Coast 
EPIC Midstream Holdings LLC on Thursday began shipping crude oil on its 400,000 barrel per day (bpd) pipeline from the Permian Basin to the U.S. Gulf Coast, pushing Midland crude prices to the highest in six months, traders said. Terminal operator Moda Midstream LLC confirmed it would be accepting the Permian crude from the EPIC line at its export facility in Ingleside, Texas, by Friday. Oil prices in Midland, the heart of the Permian shale field, rallied to 60 cents per barrel over U.S. crude futures.

Aug 16 - BP publishes LNG contract templates to push industry standardization 
Global oil and gas major BP has published its master sales and purchase contract templates for its liquefied natural gas (LNG) trading business and says it is the first of its peers to do so. BP, which has a global LNG portfolio made up of volumes it has produced or bought, said on its website it expects that publishing its LNG master sales and purchase agreement (MSPA) templates will "contribute to the broader discussion around standardisation and liquidity for LNG transactions."

Aug 15 - Saudi, Trump 'jawboning' suggests $75 top for oil market 
Ask Saudi Arabia about its preferred oil price and the kingdom will say it has no target. But a look at the pronouncements on the oil market by the world's top oil exporter this year points to an oil price aspiration of around $70 per barrel. OPEC's de facto leader probably would not mind oil prices rising to $75 per barrel and beyond. But it has a problem. As soon as prices surge, U.S. President Donald Trump pops up, often on Twitter, to urge Saudi Arabia to lower prices.

Aug 15 - U.S. crude stocks build unexpectedly; gasoline demand at record high - EIA 
U.S. crude oil stockpiles rose unexpectedly for a second week in row as refineries cut output last week, while fuel inventories posted surprise drawdowns with gasoline demand hitting a record high, the Energy Information Administration said on Wednesday. Crude inventories rose by 1.6 million barrels in the week to Aug. 9, compared with analysts' expectations in a Reuters poll for a decrease of 2.8 million barrels. At 440.5 million barrels, inventories were about 3% above the five-year average for this time of year, the EIA said in its weekly report.

Aug 15 - Coal may be dying, but growth in the seaborne market says not yet: Russell 
The prevailing market view on coal is that the industry is now facing terminal decline, as renewables and natural gas displace the polluting fuel. The problem is the facts don't quite fit the narrative. The coal industry can be split into two broad sectors, namely coal mined and burnt domestically, and the seaborne market, where coal is mined and exported to countries that need to import energy.

Aug 15 - PDVSA partners fear reach of latest U.S. sanctions on Venezuela - sources
Foreign joint venture partners with Venezuelan state-owned oil company PDVSA are concerned the latest set of U.S. sanctions on the South American country could disrupt their operations, three industry sources said. The Trump administration last week froze all Venezuelan government assets in the United States and U.S. officials ratcheted up threats against companies that do business with Venezuela. 

Aug 15 - Gibraltar to release Iranian oil tanker on Thursday - Sun newspaper 
The British territory of Gibraltar will on Thursday release an Iranian oil tanker seized by Royal Marines in the Mediterranean in July, the Sun newspaper reported, citing sources close to Gibraltar Chief Minister Fabian Picardo. Picardo would not apply to renew an order to detain Grace 1, the report said, adding that he is now satisfied that the oil tanker is no longer heading to Syria.

Aug 15 - Sanctions-hit Rosneft requests payment in euros in naphtha tender 
Russian state oil company Rosneft has for the first time asked buyers to use the euro as the default currency in a spot tender to sell naphtha, an official Rosneft document shows. The tender, for naphtha loading from ports in Russia's Far East, is the first time Rosneft has requested euros in an oil product tender and reflects the company's attempts to offset any potential negative impact of U.S. sanctions on Russia, three traders said.

Aug 14 - After 50 years in UK North Sea, Exxon eyes the exit - sources 
Exxon Mobil is considering a sale of its assets in the British North Sea after more than 50 years in the oil and gas basin as it focuses on U.S. shale production and new projects. The world's largest publicly traded energy company has held talks with a number of North Sea operators in recent weeks to gauge interest in some or all of its assets, which could fetch up to $2 billion, according to three industry sources with knowledge of the matter.

Aug 14 - Iran says Britain might release oil tanker soon, Gibraltar says not yet  
The British territory of Gibraltar will not yet release an Iranian oil tanker seized by Royal Marines in the Mediterranean despite an Iranian report that it could do so on Tuesday, an official Gibraltar source said. The commandeering of the Grace 1 on July 4 exacerbated frictions between Tehran and the West and led to retaliatory moves in Gulf waterways used to ship oil.

Aug 14 - China July crude throughput climbs on-yr, but off record as glut weighs 
China's July crude oil throughput rose 4% from a year earlier, official data showed on Wednesday, buoyed by improved refinery profit-margins and as new plants started production. Refinery runs reached 52.6 million tonnes last month, or about 12.39 million barrels per day (bpd), according to figures from the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS).

Aug 14 - Trump avoids becoming the Grinch, but weakens trade hand with China: Russell 
President Donald Trump has inadvertently admitted that the United States no longer holds the whip hand in the ongoing trade dispute with China, after backtracking on his latest escalation of the tariff war. Tariffs of 10% were due to be imposed on the remaining $300 billion of annual imports from China on Sept. 1, but some will now only come into effect on Dec. 15, the U.S. Trade Representative's Office announced on Wednesday. 

Aug 14 - Commerzbank cuts end-2019 Brent forecast by $5 on trade, demand woes 
Commerzbank cut its end-2019 Brent oil price forecast by $5 to $65 a barrel on Tuesday, citing a gloomy demand outlook amid heightened trade tensions between the United States and China. "There are growing fears among market participants that an escalating trade war could put the brakes on oil demand in both countries," analysts at the bank said in a note.

Aug 14 - Trafigura in ship fuel venture with Frontline, Golden Ocean 
Commodities trader Trafigura is joining forces with shipping firms Frontline and Golden Ocean to supply marine fuel ahead of a shake up in regulation which could disrupt delivery and cause prices to spike. The three companies said on Tuesday the joint venture is expected to start operating in the third quarter, subject to agreement on final terms.

Aug 14 - Trump promises more big energy projects at Pennsylvania plant 
President Donald Trump told workers on Tuesday at a $6 billion petrochemicals plant being built in western Pennsylvania that more big U.S. energy projects were coming as his administration rolls back environmental regulations. "This is just the beginning," Trump told workers wearing hard hats at Shell's ethylene cracker plant in Beaver County, Pennsylvania. "My administration is clearing the way for other massive, multibillion-dollar investments."

Aug 13 - U.S. shale oil output to rise to record 8.77 mln bpd in Sept - EIA 
U.S. oil output from seven major shale formations is expected to rise by 85,000 barrels per day (bpd) in September, to a record 8.77 million bpd, the U.S. Energy Information Administration forecast in its monthly drilling productivity report on Monday. The largest change is expected in the Permian Basin of Texas and New Mexico, where output is seen climbing 75,000 bpd to 4.42 million bpd in September, also an all-time high. That is the biggest increase forecast for the basin since April.

Aug 13 - Citgo chooses new CEO to navigate political, legal turmoil - sources 
Citgo Petroleum Corp has selected Carlos Jorda as its next chief executive, according to three people familiar with the matter, turning to a seasoned refinery expert and native Venezuelan to run a company facing legal attacks and working under U.S. sanctions against parent Petroleos de Venezuela (PDVSA). Citgo cut ties with PDVSA earlier this year after U.S. President Donald Trump's administration sanctioned the state-run company and recognized Juan Guaido, Venezuela's congress chief, as the nation's legitimate leader. Citgo officials loyal to President Nicolas Maduro were ousted and new boards for PDVSA and Citgo were named by the Venezuelan congress in February.

Aug 13 - Saudi Aramco aims to buy Reliance stake, reports lower earnings 
Saudi Aramco is planning a multibillion dollar investment in India's Reliance Industries as the energy giant diversifies its oil business, where weaker prices cut its first-half profit by 12%. In preparation for what could be the world's largest initial public offering (IPO), state-run Aramco began publishing its results this year and also started issuing international bonds. The world's top oil producer plans to launch an IPO by 2020-2021, having postponed its flotation from last year.

Aug 13 - Trafigura starts shipping Permian crude on new Cactus II pipeline 
Global commodities trader Trafigura AG said on Monday it has started shipments of Permian basin crude to the Corpus Christi oil hub in Texas via the new Cactus II pipeline system. Trafigura signed a long-term agreement with pipeline operator Plains All American Pipeline LP last year to transport a total of 300,000 barrels per day (bpd) of crude and condensate on the pipeline.

Aug 13 - India's crude oil imports are lacklustre, joining coal, LNG: Russell 
India's imports of crude oil have stalled in recent months, but the malaise in the country's energy sector is deeper, with both coal and liquefied natural gas (LNG) also soft. India, Asia's second-biggest crude importer behind China, brought in 3.99 million barrels per day in July, according to vessel and port data compiled by Refinitiv. This was weaker than June's 4.03 million bpd and only just ahead of May's 3.91 million bpd.

Aug 13 - Hedge funds polarised on oil by economy and supply threats: Kemp 
Hedge fund managers remain deeply divided about what matters more for the future direction of oil – intensifying fears about a global recession or Saudi Arabia’s production cuts and other supply disruptions. Hedge funds and other money managers sold futures and options equivalent to 25 million barrels in the six most important contracts linked to petroleum prices in the week to Aug. 6.

Aug 12 - IEA says oil demand growth at lowest since 2008 
Mounting signs of an economic slowdown and a ratcheting up of the U.S.-China trade war have caused global oil demand to grow at its slowest pace since the financial crisis of 2008, the International Energy Agency (IEA) said on Friday. "The situation is becoming even more uncertain ... global oil demand growth has been very sluggish in the first half of 2019," the IEA said in its monthly report.

Aug 12 - Trump's EPA grants 31 small refinery waivers from biofuel laws, angering corn lobby
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has granted 31 small refinery biofuel waivers for 2018 on Friday, infuriating the ethanol and corn producers who blamed the Trump administration for bailing out the oil industry when U.S. farmers were suffering due to trade tariffs and low prices. The waivers from the country's biofuel laws were fewer than previous year's and marked an increase in the number of petitions rejected, but the EPA's decision was still unlikely to satisfy the powerful U.S. corn lobby which wants a broad retrenchment of the biofuel waiver program it blames for undercutting ethanol demand.

Aug 12 - Trump administration moves to limit state powers to block pipelines, terminals
The Trump administration on Friday unveiled a proposal that would curb state powers to block pipelines and other energy projects, drawing praise from the oil industry but criticism from progressive states and Democratic lawmakers who said it would jeopardize water quality. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency move comes four months after President Donald Trump ordered the EPA to change a section of the U.S. Clean Water Act that states like New York and Washington have used to delay pipelines and terminals.

Aug 12 - U.S. oil drillers cut rigs for sixth week in a row - Baker Hughes
U.S. energy firms this week reduced the number of oil rigs operating for a sixth week in a row as producers cut spending on new drilling and completions leading to lower production growth forecasts. Drillers cut six oil rigs in the week to Aug. 9, bringing the total count down to 764, the lowest since February 2018, General Electric Co's Baker Hughes energy services firm said in its closely followed report on Friday. 

Aug 12 - Speculators raise U.S. crude oil net longs - CFTC 
Hedge funds raised their net long U.S. crude futures and options positions in the week to Aug. 6, the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) said on Friday. The speculator group boosted its combined futures and options position in New York and London by 8,660 contracts to 169,582 during the period, after it fell the prior week to its lowest since June 18.

Aug 12 - Canada's Inter Pipeline confirms it received takeover bid, but not in talks to sell 
Canada's Inter Pipeline Ltd confirmed on Friday it received an unsolicited takeover bid, but said it was not in talks to sell. Inter Pipeline's shares were halted on Friday, after a two-day rally sparked by a report of an offer for the oil pipeline and storage company.

Aug 09 - Iraq close to pipeline deal with BP and Eni, rather than Exxon - sources
Iraq is close to reaching a deal with oil majors BP and Eni for an export pipeline project that was initially planned as part of a mega-deal with U.S. energy giant ExxonMobil, according to five senior Iraqi oil officials involved in the negotiations. Under the proposed $400 million agreement, British company BP and Italy's Eni would run the scheme to build two seabed oil pipelines for Iraq's southern exports through the Gulf, the sources told Reuters, declining to be named as the discussions have not been made public.

Aug 09 - New U.S. pipelines poised to start price war for shale shippers
The operators of two new pipelines in West Texas shale fields are offering discounted prices to attract shippers accustomed to high fees to move oil to export hubs, according to the pipeline companies and federal filings. These bargain rates, in one case half the initial published rate, will aid strapped oil producers that once had to sell their oil for about $10 less per barrel because of transport constraints to move their oil from the largest shale oil field in the country.

Aug 09 - Anadarko shareholders go for the cash in $38 bln Occidental buyout
Shareholders of Anadarko Petroleum Corp on Thursday voted overwhelmingly to sell the company for $38 billion to rival Occidental Petroleum Corp, ending a short-lived contest that pitted two of the most storied names in the oil industry against one another. Occidental in May beat out Chevron Corp to grab a major oil industry prize: Anadarko's nearly quarter million acres in the Permian Basin, the top U.S. shale field, where low-cost output has helped turn the United States into the world’s top oil producer at more than 12 million barrels per day.

Aug 09 - U.S. natural gas demand is at a record - and prices keep dropping
U.S. natural gas demand is at an all-time high and expected to keep rising - and yet, prices are falling. U.S. gas futures this week collapsed to a three-year low, while spot prices were on track to post their weakest summer in over 20 years. In other markets, such lackluster pricing would cause investment to retrench and supply to contract. But gas production is at a record high and expected to keep growing. Demand is rising as power generators shut coal plants and burn more gas for electricity and as rapidly expanding liquefied natural gas (LNG) terminals turn more of the fuel into super-cooled liquid for export.

Aug 09 - Glencore and the perils of riding the electric vehicle tiger: Andy Home
Glencore has "a key role to play in enabling the transition to a low-carbon economy," according to Chief Executive Officer Ivan Glasenberg, writing in the company's 2018 annual report. Glencore's "well-positioned portfolio" includes metals at the heart of the electric vehicle (EV) revolution such as copper, cobalt and nickel. But the global metals and marketing powerhouse has just found out that riding the EV tiger can be perilous as well.

Aug 09 - Denmark's Nord Stream 2 route request could cause 8-month delay, cost 660 mln euros - operator
A Russian-led gas pipeline project across the Baltic Sea to Europe could be delayed by up to eight months and cost an extra 660 million euros ($740 million) due to hurdles in securing the necessary permits from Denmark, the pipeline operator has said. The 1,230-km (765-mile) Nord Stream 2 pipeline, now under construction, has come under fire from the United States and several eastern European, Nordic and Baltic countries, which say the conduit will increase Europe's reliance on Russian gas.

Aug 08 - China's July crude oil imports rise as refiners ramp up output
China's crude oil imports in July rose 14% from a year earlier while exports of refined fuel surged 20% as recovering profit margins prompted refiners to ramp up production that at the same time contributed to a growing fuel glut. Arrivals of crude oil last month were 41.04 million tonnes, equivalent to 9.66 million barrels per day (bpd), according to data released by the General Administration of Customs on Thursday.

Aug 08 - U.S. crude stockpiles rise unexpectedly as imports soar - EIA
U.S. crude oil stockpiles rose last week after nearly two months of declines as imports jumped to their highest since January, while gasoline and distillate inventories also grew as refiners ramped up production to their highest rate this year so far, the Energy Information Administration said on Wednesday. Crude inventories rose 2.4 million barrels in the week to Aug. 2, compared with analysts' expectations for a decrease of 2.8 million barrels.

Aug 08 - Saudi Aramco valuation gap persists as IPO talks resume – sources
Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Salman is insisting on a $2 trillion valuation of oil firm Aramco, even though some bankers and company insiders say the kingdom should trim its target to around $1.5 trillion, industry and banking sources said. With Aramco talking again to banks about an initial public offering (IPO), its board is meeting later this week and will probably hold a discussion about the company's value, a source close to the company said. 

Aug 08 - U.S. Northeast fuel sellers brace for uncertain winter for heating oil supply
Fuel distributors in the U.S. Northeast are preparing for an uncertain heating oil season this winter, with some locking in additional contracts, as upcoming global sulfur regulations are due to pull on distillate fuel demand, market participants said. The East Coast region has become vulnerable to price increases this winter, traders said, citing new shipping rules limiting sulfur content in refined fuels, along with the shutdown of Philadelphia Energy Solutions' 335,000 barrels-per-day (bpd) refinery complex, a key supplier for the region.

Aug 08 - Western Canadian crude inventories fall to smallest level in nearly two years
Western Canadian crude oil inventories fell in July to their lowest level in nearly two years, energy information provider Genscape said on Wednesday, as crude-by-rail shipments accelerated. Total stocks were 27.7 million barrels as of July 26, down sharply from the record high of 37.1 million barrels set in April. The inventories were the lowest since November 2017.

Aug 08 - Nigeria's new oil czar wants to open books, turn into fuel exporter
Nigeria's state oil company plans to partner with a private refinery under construction on the shores of Lagos to turn the oil-producing country into a fuel supplier for the region, the new boss said in an interview with Reuters. The aim to ink a contract with the Dangote refinery, with a capacity of 650,000 barrels per day (bpd), is part of new Managing Director Mele Kolo Kyari's blueprint for transforming the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) into a world-class state oil company. 

Aug 08 - China's commodity imports surge, confound trade war fears: Russell
Forget the drop in the dollar value of China's imports in July, the important numbers were the bumper purchases of major commodities including crude oil, coal, iron ore and copper. The 5.6% drop in the dollar value of July imports is almost irrelevant and most likely a reflection of lower commodity prices rather than any weakness in the Chinese economy.

Aug 07 - U.S. Gulf oil output slowdown in July cuts 2019 output growth - EIA
U.S. oil output is expected to rise 1.28 million barrels per day to 12.27 million bpd this year, the U.S. Energy Information Administration said in a monthly report, slightly lowering its annual growth forecast from 1.40 million bpd last month. The reduction in the EIA's growth forecast came after Hurricane Barry disrupted Gulf of Mexico output in July, the agency said.

Aug 07 - Brazil's Petrobras studies sale of power plants, CEO tells brokerage 
Brazil's state-controlled oil company Petroleo Brasileiro SA is studying the creation of a subsidiary comprised of around 15 power plants, which could then be sold through an initial public offering, analysts at XP Investimentos said in a report sent to clients on Tuesday. Analysts at the Sao Paulo brokerage led by Gabriel Fonseca wrote the report to clients after a breakfast with Chief Executive Officer Roberto Castello Branco.

Aug 07 - Oil's post-crash bounce fades as buy-the-dip proves a bust: Kemp 
Oil prices have continued to drift lower after plunging last week, highlighting the risk for traders trying to exploit mean-reversion strategies by buying futures contracts after a sharp fall in prices. Front-month Brent futures prices tumbled by more than 7% on Thursday, a percentage change equivalent to more than three standard deviations for all daily price moves since 1990.

Aug 07 - New Venezuela sanctions protect Citgo, encourage debt talks - opposition
Venezuela's opposition on Tuesday celebrated a sweeping U.S. sanctions order against the government of President Nicolas Maduro, saying the measure would protect Venezuela-owned U.S.-based refiner Citgo from seizure by creditors. Three allies of opposition leader Juan Guaido also said the measure allowed for restructuring negotiations with bondholders, which had been prohibited under previous sanctions. That could be key to protecting Citgo, since half of state oil company PDVSA's shares in the refiner were put up as collateral for its 2020 bond.

Aug 06 - Petrobras LPG unit seen attracting Mubadala, SHV, Itausa bids - sources
Bidding groups led by Brazilian investment firm Itausa Investimentos SA, Abu Dhabi state investor Mubadala and SHV Energy of the Netherlands are expected to submit binding proposals to acquire state-controlled oil company Petroleo Brasileiro SA's LPG unit, two sources with knowledge of the matter said on Monday. Private equity firms CVC Capital Partners and Advent International have decided not to bid, the sources said ahead of a Wednesday deadline, after deciding the deal would be a better fit for strategic buyers. CVC and Advent declined to comment.

Aug 06 - Asia jet fuel premiums at highest seasonal peak since 2013, but may soon fade
Asian jet fuel buyers are paying the highest cash premiums for this time of year since 2013 amid a short-term supply shortage, but the values are likely to fade as late summer travel demand slumps in coming weeks and refiners ramp production back up. The premium for jet fuel cargoes in the Asian trading hub of Singapore rose to as high as 38 cents a barrel above benchmark quotes last week, taking the differentials to their strongest levels for July-August since 2013. The premiums were at 23 cents a barrel on Tuesday.

Aug 06 - Hedge funds were divided on oil, until Trump tweeted: Kemp
Hedge fund managers were deeply divided over the future direction for oil prices, until the United States announced fresh tariffs on China and sent prices plunging late last week. Hedge funds and other money managers increased their net long position in the six major petroleum futures and options contracts by 20 million barrels over the seven days ending on July 30.

Aug 06 - Iran says will not tolerate "maritime offences" in Gulf
Iran runs security in the Strait of Hormuz and will no longer tolerate "maritime offences" there, its foreign minister said on Monday, a day after it seized a second oil tanker near the strategic waterway that it accused of smuggling fuel. Tanker traffic through the Strait has become a focus for an increasingly tense standoff between Washington and Tehran, into which Britain has also been dragged, and the United States has beefed up its military presence in the Gulf since May.

Aug 05 - Iran seizes Iraqi oil tanker smuggling fuel in Gulf -TV
Iranian Revolutionary Guards seized an Iraqi oil tanker in the Gulf which they said was smuggling fuel and detained seven crewmen, Iran's state media reported on Sunday, in a show of power amid heightened tension with the West. The vessel was intercepted near Iran's Farsi Island in the Gulf, Iran's semi-official Fars news agency said. The elite Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC) has a navy base on Farsi Island which is located north of the Strait of Hormuz.

Aug 05 - Exxon Mobil profit sinks, Chevron rises as both boost output
Weaker second-quarter refining and chemicals profits offset surging U.S. shale production at U.S. oil majors Exxon Mobil Corp and Chevron Corp, the two reported on Friday. Exxon's topped analysts' reduced estimates for the quarter but net fell 21% from a year earlier, its third quarter in a row of weaker year-over-year profit, despite a near doubling in Permian shale oil output.

Aug 05 - PES may report toxic chemical release in June refinery blast -sources 
Philadelphia Energy Solutions was expected to report to government officials on Friday that the toxic chemical hydrofluoric acid may have been released from its refinery in June, when a series of blasts and fire damaged the plant, two sources familiar with the plan said. It was unclear how much of the chemical might have been released from the refinery or if the PES report would be made public, the sources said. PES officials were not immediately available for comment.

Aug 05 - Electric ambition: BHP eyes EV market with speciality chemicals 
BHP Group will face a test of its ability to move beyond bulk mining over the coming year with a foray into specialty chemicals for the battery industry at its once struggling Nickel West division. The global miner said on Friday it plans to start production of nickel sulphate in the second quarter of next year, a higher value, higher purity product for sale to customers throughout the electric vehicle (EV) supply chain.

Aug 05 - U.S. shale shippers will pay surcharge for Trump steel tariffs
Plains All American Pipeline LP said on Friday it will tack on a fee for users of a new oil pipeline to pay for the cost of the Trump administration's tariffs on imported steel, with analysts and traders calling it the first U.S. energy pipeline operator to do so. In addition to the steel levies announced last year, President Donald Trump on Thursday said he plans to expand U.S. tariffs to $300 billion in Chinese imports, escalating a trade dispute that has increased costs for American consumers of everything from steel to electronics to shoes.

Aug 05 - Hedge funds cut bullish bets on U.S crude - CFTC
Hedge funds and money managers cut bullish wagers on U.S. crude in the week to July 30, the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) said on Friday, as oil prices were pressured by persistent worries about demand. The speculator group cut its combined futures and options position in New York and London by 11,204 contracts to 160,922 during the period, the lowest level since June 18.

Aug 05 - U.S. crude exports rise to monthly record of 3.16 mln bpd in June -U.S. Census 
U.S. crude oil exports surged 260,000 barrels per day (bpd) in June to a monthly record of 3.16 million bpd as South Korea bought record volumes and China resumed purchases, data from the U.S. Census Bureau showed on Friday. South Korea surpassed Canada to become the biggest purchaser of U.S. crude at about 605,000 bpd. China purchased about 292,000 bpd, the most since June last year and was the third-largest buyer of U.S. crude in June, the data showed.

Aug 02 - Saudi Arabia may cut crude oil prices to Asia in Sept 
Top oil exporter Saudi Arabia may cut prices for most of the crude grades it sells to Asia for a second straight month in September after Middle East benchmark prices weakened. The official selling price (OSP) for flagship Arab Light crude could drop by at least 50 cents a barrel, falling below a premium of $2 a barrel for the first time in four months, a Reuters survey of five buyers in Asia showed.

Aug 02 - European gas price slump yet to find a floor as inventories burst 
A protracted decline in European gas prices, which has hurt some energy firms but may prove a boon to buyers, has yet to find a floor as low summer demand could boost gas storage tanks close to chock-full amid soaring global supply. British and Dutch prices, benchmarks for Europe-wide gas sales as wesll as some liquefied natural gas (LNG) markets, have lost half of their value since last September. They hit 10-year lows in June, weighed down by an influx of LNG and gas supplies from Russia, the United States and others.

Aug 02 - Venezuela oil exports slid 17.5% in July as client portfolio shrank - data 
Venezuela's oil exports fell 17.5% in July to their second-lowest level since Washington imposed sanctions on the nation as state-run PDVSA finds fewer customers to take its oil, according to internal data from the company and Refinitiv Eikon. PDVSA and its partners exported a total of 932,887 barrels per day (bpd) of crude and refined products last month in 35 cargoes mostly sent to Asian destinations, compared with 40 cargoes shipped in June, the data showed.

Aug 02 - Brazil's Petrobras studies downsizing logistics unit
Brazilian state-run oil firm Petrobras is studying a mass transfer of employees out of its Transpetro logistics unit, according to a document seen by Reuters, in a sign the company may be gearing up to privatize additional assets. The human resources departments of Petroleo Brasileiro SA, as the company is formally known, and Transpetro are developing an "action plan for the evaluation and possible return of (employees) ceded to Transpetro from the parent company," according to the document, dated July 24.

Aug 02 - Texas county sues Exxon over air pollution from petrochemical fire - official 
Harris County, Texas sued Exxon Mobil Corp on Thursday over pollution from a fire a day earlier at the company's Baytown Olefins Plant, according to an attorney for the county. The fire was being investigated by federal and state agencies. The U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) and the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ) were at the scene to determine the cause of a blaze that raged for hours and raised a column of black smoke over the area.

Aug 02 - Occidental Petroleum plans to close Anadarko deal soon after Aug. 8 vote 
Occidental Petroleum Corp plans to quickly complete its $38 billion purchase of Anadarko Petroleum after the latter's Aug. 8 shareholder vote, the company said on Thursday. The earlier-than-expected closing will give the company a head start to evaluate assets that it plans to sell to pay off debt supporting the acquisition, Occidental Chief Executive Vicki Hollub said on a conference call following release of the company's second-quarter results.

Aug 01 - OPEC oil output hits lowest since 2011 on Saudi cut, sanctions - Reuters survey 
OPEC oil output hit an eight-year low in July as a further voluntary cut by top exporter Saudi Arabia deepened losses caused by U.S. sanctions on Iran and outages elsewhere in the group, a Reuters survey found. The 14-member Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries pumped 29.42 million barrels per day (bpd) this month, the survey showed, down 280,000 bpd from June's revised figure and the lowest OPEC total since 2011.

Aug 01 - Fire under control at Exxon petrochemical plant; some workers suffer minor burns 
Exxon Mobil Corp brought under control a fire that erupted on Wednesday at its Baytown, Texas, refining and chemical plant complex, injuring 37 workers, none seriously. Emergency crews worked to extinguish the fire into the evening, the company said in a statement. The cause of the blaze was not disclosed, but an investigation was under way and Exxon said it was cooperating with authorities.

Aug 01 - U.S. crude stocks slump 8.5 mln bbls in seventh straight weekly fall - EIA 
U.S. crude oil stockpiles fell for the seventh straight week, falling to their lowest levels since November even as production rebounded and net imports increased, the Energy Information Administration said on Wednesday. Crude inventories fell 8.5 million barrels in the week ended July 26, far exceeding analysts' expectations for a decrease of 2.6 million barrels. At 436.5 million

Aug 01 - U.S. sanctions on PDVSA block Crystallex from seizing Citgo shares - Guaido advisers 
U.S. sanctions on Venezuelan state oil company PDVSA prevent Canadian gold mining company Crystallex from seizing shares in PDVSA's U.S. subsidiary, Citgo, two advisers to Venezuelan opposition leader Juan Guaido said on Wednesday. On Monday, a U.S. court ruled that Crystallex International Corp could attach Citgo shares to collect on a $1.4 billion arbitration award as compensation for Venezuela's expropriation of its mining assets in the country. 

Aug 01 - GE's Baker Hughes beats estimates on international demand, LNG drilling 
General Electric Co's oilfield services arm, Baker Hughes, beat quarterly profit estimates on Wednesday, driven by higher LNG drilling and demand for its oilfield services in international markets, sending its shares up nearly 6%. Revenue in the oilfield services segment, which constitutes a majority of the company's operations, rose 14% to $3.26 billion in the second quarter, led by growth in the Middle East, North Sea and Europe.

Aug 01 - Libya's biggest oilfield shut, NOC declares force majeure  
Libya's Sharara oilfield, the country's largest, was forced to shut down after a valve on the pipeline linking it to the Zawiya oil terminal was closed late Tuesday evening, state-owned National Oil Corp (NOC) said on Wednesday. The shutdown prompted NOC to declare force majeure on loadings of the crude grade on Wednesday, a document seen by Reuters showed.

Jul 31 - Hit by sanctions and rising tensions, Iran's oil exports slide in July 
Iranian oil exports have dropped in July to as low as 100,000 barrels per day (bpd) due to sanctions and rising tension with the United States and Britain, according to an industry source and tanker data, deepening global supply losses. The United States reimposed sanctions on Iran in November after pulling out of a 2015 nuclear accord between Tehran and six world powers. Aiming to cut Iran's sales to zero, Washington in May ended sanction waivers given to importers of Iranian oil.

Jul 31 - Libya's key Sharara oilfield shutting down - source 
Libya's Sharara oilfield, the country's largest, was shutting down on Tuesday after a valve on the pipeline linking it to the Zawiya oil terminal was shut, a source with knowledge of the matter told Reuters. It was not immediately clear where the valve was located. The field, which produces 290,000 barrels per day, was shut down earlier this month after an unknown group blocked a valve on the pipeline to Zawiya. 

Jul 31 - BP profit again outstrips forecasts, lifted by higher oil output 
A strong rise in oil and gas production helped BP offset weaker crude prices and refining profit to again beat profit expectations on Tuesday, boosting its shares. BP's second quarter contrasts with Total and Norway's Equinor, which posted sharp earnings drops, and builds on a steady recovery after deep cost cuts since the 2014 downturn, project start-ups and last year's $10.5 billion purchase of BHP's U.S. shale assets. 

Jul 31 - Texas shale pioneers struggle to appease investors, compete with majors 
Seven years ago, Diamondback Energy Inc went public with a modest parcel of drillable land in the Permian Basin of West Texas. Like dozens of other Permian startups, the firm then pursued a classic wildcatter's strategy - borrowing to buy up acreage, acquire competitors and quickly boost output in the booming shale field. Today, Diamondback is the 7th largest producer in the top U.S. oil region, according to researcher Wood Mackenzie.

Jul 31 - For China, U.S. soybeans are small fry; crude, LNG, coal are the main game: Russell 
China's purchase of some U.S. soybeans is being viewed as a tentative sign of a little détente in the dispute between the world's two largest economies, but real progress would be a resumption of what had been a burgeoning energy trade. U.S. and Chinese negotiators are meeting for two days of talks in Shanghai starting on Tuesday amid modest expectations for progress to resolve the trade imbroglio that has resulted in tit-for-tat tariffs being imposed on billions of dollars worth of imports and exports.

Jul 30 - Protests over worker deaths paralyse production at some Coal India mines 
Members of Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi's Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) have mounted protests that have paralysed production at one of India's biggest coalfields following a deadly accident last week. The BJP workers have been staging sit-down protests and waving flags at state-run Coal India Ltd's mines in the eastern state of Odisha, demanding a safety audit of all mines in the region.

Jul 30 - Hedge funds dump oil as fragile calm settles on Mideast: Kemp 
Hedge funds sold oil last week, reversing most of the purchases made the week before, as tensions in the Middle East reached a fragile equilibrium and prospect of armed conflict receded. Hedge fund and other money managers were net sellers of 65 million barrels of futures and options linked to petroleum prices in the week to July 23, after buying 84 million barrels in the week to July 16.

Jul 30 - Court ruling against Venezuela in Crystallex case puts Citgo at risk 
A U.S. federal appeals court on Monday rejected an appeal by Venezuela's state-owned oil company to set aside an order allowing a Canadian gold mining company to seize shares in its U.S. refining unit, Citgo Petroleum Corp. Crystallex International Corp had won the $1.4 billion judgment as compensation for the expropriation of its assets in Venezuela under late leftist President Hugo Chavez. The 3rd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Philadelphia said a lower court was right to attach Petroleos de Venezuela's shares of its U.S. unit, which owns Citgo.

Jul 30 - U.S. wants ships to keep their tracking devices on - senior official 
The United States wants all ships to keep their tracking transponders on to cut down on illicit activity and smuggling, and to increase transparency with movements of ships around the world, a senior State Department official told Reuters. Automatic identification systems trackers are the most accessible way of observing where ships are located.

Jul 29 - U.S. renews Chevron license in Venezuela for 3 months as Trump officials compromise  
The Trump administration on Friday renewed Chevron Corp's license for three months to drill for oil in Venezuela despite sanctions, a compromise between officials seeking maximum pressure to oust socialist President Nicolas Maduro and those favoring a longer renewal for the company. The Treasury Department renewed the license through Oct. 25 for Chevron, the last U.S. oil company operating in OPEC member Venezuela.

Jul 29 - U.S. ethanol industry nearing breaking point -Green Plains CEO 
The U.S. ethanol industry is about to break under the weight of the Trump Administration's trade war with China and the surge in the number of small refineries exempted from the nation's biofuel laws, said Todd Becker, CEO of Green Plains. The U.S. ethanol industry was preparing for growth in recent years, but the momentum has stalled in the face of President Donald Trump's trade war with China, a major buyer, and his administration's decision to align itself with the oil industry on demand-cutting waivers from biofuel laws, Becker said.

Jul 29 - First big U.S. offshore wind project hits snag due to fishing-industry concerns 
Trump administration infighting is holding up approval of the first major U.S. offshore wind energy project, with agencies sparring over whether the proposal does enough to protect the fishing industry, according to interviews and agency documents. The delays are a setback to President Donald Trump's efforts to fast-track big energy infrastructure projects and could threaten the administration's plans to launch a promising new domestic industry.

Jul 29 - China's Iran oil imports plunge as U.S. sanctions bite 
China's crude oil imports from Iran sank almost 60% in June from a year earlier, Chinese customs data showed on Saturday, following the end of a waiver on U.S. sanctions at the start of May. Crude shipment from Iran were 855,638 tonnes last month, or 208,205 barrels per day (bpd), data from the General Administration of Customs showed. That compared with 254,016 bpd in May.

Jul 29 - India's Venezuelan June oil imports highest in 7 quarters - trade 
India's oil imports from Venezuela surged to about 475,200 barrels per day (bpd) in June, more than double the previous month and highest in 21 months, data from shipping and industry sources showed. Washington imposed sanctions on Venezuela's state oil company PDVSA in January to put pressure on socialist President Nicolas Maduro. These sanctions have driven away many customers of Venezuelan oil, leaving supplies for some refiners.

Jul 29 - South Korea to send naval unit to Strait of Hormuz - newspaper
South Korea plans to join a U.S.-led maritime force in the Middle East by sending a naval unit, which includes a destroyer, to help guard oil tankers sailing through the Strait of Hormuz, a South Korean newspaper reported on Monday. Tensions between Iran and the United States have increased since Washington pulled out of the Iranian nuclear deal last year and reimposed sanctions on Tehran. 

Jul 29 - Hedge funds cut bullish U.S. crude wagers - CFTC 
Hedge funds and other money managers cut their net long U.S. crude futures and options positions in the week to July 23, the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) said on Friday. The speculator group cut its combined futures and options position in New York and London by 33,232 contracts to 172,126 during the period.

Jul 26 - Canada oil companies hopeful on deal with Alberta government to boost production
Two of Canada's biggest energy producers on Thursday said they were looking to the Alberta government to agree to a deal that would allow companies to boost their oil output in the face of curtailments in Canada's main crude-producing province. Crude production in Alberta has been limited since Jan. 1 2019 when the provincial government imposed curtailments to ease congestion on export pipelines that pushed the discount on Canadian crude to record lows. 

Jul 26 - Saudi Arabia aims to expand pipeline to reduce oil exports via Gulf
Saudi Arabia aims to raise the capacity of its east-west pipeline by 40% in two years so more of its oil exports can avoid passing through the Strait of Hormuz, the energy minister said on Thursday. Khalid al-Falih also told Reuters that importers should, as a first immediate step, secure shipments through the strategic waterway at the mouth of Gulf, after attacks on oil tankers in the area and the seizure of a British-flagged ship by Iran.

Jul 26 - Flags of inconvenience - noose tightens around Iranian shipping
Somewhere on its journey from the waters off Iran, around Africa's southern tip and into the Mediterranean, the Grace 1 oil tanker lost the flag under which it sailed and ceased to be registered to Panama. Iran later claimed it as its own. The ship carrying 2 million barrels of Iranian crude was seized by British Royal Marines off Gibraltar, raising tensions in the Gulf where Iran detained a UK-flagged ship in retaliation.

Jul 26 - Britain begins escorting all UK vessels through Hormuz Strait
Britain has started sending a warship to accompany all British-flagged vessels through the Strait of Hormuz, a change in policy announced on Thursday after the government previously said it did not have resources to do so. Tensions have spiked between Iran and Britain since last Friday when Iranian commandos seized a British-flagged tanker in the world's most important waterway for oil shipments. That came two weeks after British forces captured an Iranian oil tanker near Gibraltar, accused of violating sanctions on Syria.

Jul 26 - Chevron 'hopeful' of U.S. approval to continue operating in Venezuela
Chevron Corp, the last U.S. oil company operating in Venezuela, said on Thursday it hopes to be able to remain in the Latin American nation as the Trump administration mulls whether to renew its license, expiring on Saturday, to do business there. The administration said a decision will be made soon on the renewal of Chevron's six-month U.S. Treasury Department license to operate in Venezuela, with billions of dollars in the company's investments at stake. The administration in January imposed sanctions on PDVSA, Venezuela's state-run oil company, intended to starve the country of oil revenue and force out President Nicolas Maduro. 

Jul 26 - China exports gasoline to Mexico, Nigeria amid overflowing output
China will ramp up gasoline exports in July and August to near record levels with cargoes moving to Mexico and Nigeria as refiners seek outlets for their fuel amid a wave of new production and slowing domestic demand. The surge in Chinese shipments will fill a supply gap caused by refinery outages in the United States and the Middle East but are likely to accelerate a plunge in Asian gasoline margins, which have dropped 50% since July 12, when they clawed back to a three-month high.

Jul 25 - Total plans $5 billion in asset sales, Q2 net profit falls
French energy giant Total said on Thursday it will sell assets worth around $5 billion mostly from its upstream exploration and production business as it seeks to focus on low breakeven projects that can withstand low oil prices. The company reported a 19% drop in adjusted net profit in the second quarter at 2.9 billion compared with the same period last year which it attributed to a combination of unfavourable market factors.

Jul 25 - Putin allies' oil feud spills into public view
The blame game over a contamination scandal in Russia’s oil industry has breached President Vladimir Putin’s inner circle. Igor Sechin, head of Rosneft, the world’s biggest publicly-traded oil company, and Nikolai Tokarev, the boss of Transneft, the world’s largest pipeline network, are embroiled in an unusually public and rancorous dispute over their companies' responses to the contamination of Russia’s Druzhba (“Friendship”) pipeline, an episode that disrupted exports and tarnished Moscow’s image as a reliable energy supplier.

Jul 25 - Counting down to 2020, Singapore's Ocean Tankers tests IMO-compliant fuel
Off the coast of Singapore, the world's largest ship refuelling centre, a bunker barge sidled next to the supertanker Pu Tuo San to fill the giant vessel with a new type of fuel that will meet global standards that start up in January. With a little over five months left until stricter marine fuel rules come into effect, shippers such as Singapore's Ocean Tankers that own the very large crude carrier (VLCC) Pu Tuo San have started testing out lower sulphur fuel to prepare their fleet for the transition.

Jul 25 - Old habits die hard: Saudi Arabia struggles to end oil addiction
When Saudi Aramco was on the verge of a deal last year to buy a stake in an Indian oil refinery, its boss quickly boarded a company jet in Paris and flew to New Delhi. Chief executive Amin Nasser arrived unannounced early on April 11, 2018, finalised the agreement and signed it later that day. Negotiators had just finished hammering out the details.

Jul 25 - China fuel exports cast shadow over Asian refining outlook: Russell
Higher fuel exports from China loom as the major threat to an otherwise fairly positive outlook for crude oil refiners across Asia, who have seen margins recover ahead of significant changes to the shipping industry. China has raised quotas for the export of refined products for 2019, allocating a third batch totalling 6 million tonnes, three traders told Reuters on Wednesday. 

Jul 25 - Stena Bulk says it spoke to seized tanker's crew, all safe and well
All 23 crew on a British oil tanker seized last week by Iran in the Strait of Hormuz are safe and well, the vessel's Swedish operator Stena Bulk said on Wednesday after speaking to them. The Stena Impero had been heading to a port in Saudi Arabia when it suddenly changed course after passing through the strait at the mouth of the Gulf and headed towards Iran, captured by Iran's Revolutionary Guards.

Jul 25 - U.S. crude stocks drop by nearly 11 mln bbls - EIA
U.S. crude stocks fell by nearly 11 million barrels last week even as refineries cut output, following a similar report from a key industry group, the Energy Information Administration said on Wednesday. Crude inventories fell by 10.8 million barrels in the week to July 19, compared with analysts' expectations for a decrease of 4 million barrels. That followed an 11-million-barrel draw reported by the American Petroleum Institute, which releases its data on Tuesdays.

Jul 25 - Global oil market in glut, but not a big enough one for OPEC
OPEC has shifted the goalposts for assessing an overhang in oil inventories, giving the group more room to prolong production cuts, while analysts warn the move will offer a distorted view of market conditions. Ever since the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries and allies led by Russia - a grouping known as OPEC+ - started curbing oil output two and a half years ago, they have targeted bringing oil in storage in the industrialised world in line with the five-year average.

Jul 25 - China raises 2019 oil product export quota volumes from last year
China issued its third batch of export quotas for refined oil products for 2019, totalling 6 million tonnes, three traders told Reuters on Wednesday. The new batch raises the total export quotas for refined oil products to 48.15 million tonnes in 2019. That compares to 43 million tonnes through the same period last year.

Jul 25 - Wisconsin tribe sues Canada's Enbridge to shut down crude oil pipeline
A Native American tribe in Wisconsin is suing Enbridge Inc in a bid to shut down an aging oil pipeline that runs across its tribal land, the latest in a string of challenges against the Canadian company's pipelines in the U.S. Midwest. The Bad River Band filed a federal lawsuit against Enbridge on Tuesday in the Western District of Wisconsin, asking for the section of Line 5 that runs across its reservation to be decommissioned and removed because of the risk of a leak.

Jul 24 - Britain wins early European support for Hormuz naval mission
France, Italy and Denmark gave initial support for a British plan for a European-led naval mission to ensure safe shipping through the Strait of Hormuz, proposed after Iran's seizure of a British-flagged tanker, three senior EU diplomats said on Tuesday. The cautious backing at a meeting of EU envoys in Brussels contrasts sharply with the lukewarm response shown by European allies to a similar American call first voiced at NATO in late June, when countries feared they could make U.S.-Iranian tensions worse.

Jul 24 - Global oil consumption stagnates leaving prices under pressure: Kemp
Global oil consumption has stalled since the middle of 2018, making lower oil prices inevitable despite the best efforts of Saudi Arabia and its allies to reduce production. The world’s top 18 oil-consuming countries, each using more than 1 million barrels per day (bpd) of petroleum products, account for almost two-thirds of world consumption, so they make a useful proxy for global demand.

Jul 24 - Trump administration split on renewing Chevron's Venezuela license
The Trump administration is split over whether to renew a license this week for energy company Chevron Corp's operations in Venezuela, with Secretary of State Mike Pompeo supporting a renewal and others opposing it, three sources with knowledge of the matter said on Tuesday. At issue is a six-month U.S. Treasury Department license that expires on July 27 that has allowed Chevron to keep operating its four joint ventures in Venezuela despite U.S. sanctions on the OPEC nation's oil sector.

Jul 24 - Bank drops objection to financing request by bankrupt Philadelphia Energy Solutions
A bank dropped its objection on Tuesday to Philadelphia Energy Solutions Inc's initial bankruptcy requests after the two sides struck an agreement over the terms of new financing. PES filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection on Sunday after a fire last month prompted it to close the largest refinery on the U.S. East Coast.

Jul 23 - Britain calls for European naval mission to counter Iran's 'piracy'
Britain called on Monday for a European-led naval mission to ensure safe shipping through the Strait of Hormuz, days after Iran seized a British-flagged tanker in what London described as an act of "state piracy" in the strategic waterway. Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt outlined the plans to parliament after a meeting of COBR, the government's emergency committee, which discussed London's response to Friday's capture of the Stena Impero tanker by Iranian commandos at sea.

Jul 23 - U.S. sanctions Chinese oil buyer over alleged Iran violations
The United States has sanctioned the China's state-run energy company Zhuhai Zhenrong Co Ltd for allegedly violating restrictions imposed on Iran's oil sector, U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said in a speech on Monday. "We've said that we will sanction any sanctionable behavior, and we mean it," Pompeo said in remarks in Florida.

Jul 23 - Hedge funds buy oil as price risks shift to the upside: Kemp
Hedge funds purchased oil last week at the fastest rate for almost a year, as escalating tensions in the Middle East and hopes for a cut in U.S. interest rates outweighed concerns about flagging global growth. Hedge funds and other money managers bought the equivalent of 84 million barrels in the six most important petroleum futures and options contracts in the week to July 16, the largest weekly increase since August 2018.

Jul 23 - Bunge and BP team up in Brazil bioenergy venture, create No. 3 sugarcane processor
U.S. commodities trader Bunge Ltd and British energy company BP Plc said on Monday they will merge their Brazilian sugar and ethanol operations to create the world's third-largest sugarcane processor. The joint venture is the largest deal in Brazil's bioenergy sector since Royal Dutch Shell joined forces with Cosan to form industry leader Raízen in 2011.

Jul 23 - Curacao says PM, Venezuela oil minister discussed PDVSA remaining as refinery operator
Curacao's prime minister and Venezuela's oil minister discussed the possibility of Venezuelan state oil company PDVSA remaining as the operator of the Caribbean nation's 335,000 barrel-per-day (bpd) Isla refinery, Curacao's government said on Monday. PDVSA's contract will expire at year-end, and the government-owned refinery has been searching for a business partner to replace it. A lack of crude shipments has left the facility largely idle.

Jul 22 - Britain weighs response to Iran Gulf crisis with few good options
Britain was weighing its next moves in the Gulf tanker crisis on Sunday, with few good options apparent as a recording emerged showing that the Iranian military defied a British warship when it boarded and seized a ship three days ago. Prime Minister Theresa May's office said she would chair a meeting of Britain's COBR emergency response committee on Monday morning to discuss the crisis.

Jul 22 - Oil outlook sours as sanctions, global tensions fail to bring out bulls
Sentiment in the oil market has shifted dramatically in recent days, with hedge funds, producers and traders all taking a more bearish tack in response to what they see as weakness in worldwide demand. The oil market has struggled to sustain a rally despite supply restrictions that generally would be considered bullish. U.S. sanctions on Venezuela and Iran have removed more than 1.5 million barrels of daily supply from the market, OPEC extended a supply-cut deal into 2020 and tensions between the United States and Iran are rising.

Jul 22 - Market braces for Mexico's annual oil hedge, trading surges -sources 
Trading in crude oil options and futures surged last week as market participants prepared for Mexico's annual oil hedging program, in which the country buys as much as $1 billion in contracts to protect its oil revenues. The global oil derivatives market braces itself every year in late spring and summer for the hedge, the market's largest and most secretive financial oil deal. This year, Mexico has faced several challenges in executing the hedge and timing has become a crucial factor.

Jul 22 - Libya's NOC declares force majeure at key Sharara oilfield after valve closure
Libya's state oil company National Oil Corporation (NOC) declared force majeure late on Saturday at the country's largest oilfield, El Sharara, after it was shut down the previous day due to a suspected valve closure. The strategic oilfield has been the target of numerous shutdowns by both protesters and armed groups in recent years.

Jul 22 - IEA does not expect "huge increase" in crude prices - executive director
The International Energy Agency (IEA) doesn't expect oil prices to rise significantly because demand is slowing and there is a glut in global crude markets, its executive director said on Friday. "Prices are determined by the markets...If we see the market today we see that the demand is slowing down considerably," said IEA's Fatih Birol, in public comments made during a two-day energy conference in New Delhi.

Jul 22 - Singapore stocks up on low-sulphur fuel ahead of new shipping rules
Oil traders are chartering more ships and snapping up fuel oil storage tanks in and around Singapore, the world's top bunkering port, to stock up cleaner fuel that will meet new shipping rules coming into force next year, industry sources said. The move has pushed up lease rates for tank storage in Singapore and increased the number of supertankers floating in Singapore and Malaysian waters as traders store fuel months ahead, betting on a spike in prices for low-sulphur fuel oil (LSFO).

Jul 22 - U.S. oil drillers cut rigs for third week in a row - Baker Hughes
U.S. energy firms this week reduced the number of oil rigs operating for a third week in a row as drillers follow through on plans to cut spending with oil prices declining amid a global supply glut. Drillers cut five oil rigs in the week to July 19, bringing the total count down to 779, the lowest since February 2018, General Electric Co's Baker Hughes energy services firm said in its closely followed report on Friday.  

Jul 22 - Hedge funds raise bullish crude bets for second week - CFTC
Hedge funds and other money managers raised their bullish wagers on U.S. crude in the latest week, the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) said on Friday. The speculator group raise its combined futures and options position in New York and London by 28,577 contracts to 205,356 during the week ended July 16. It was the second consecutive increase.

Jul 19 - U.S. says Navy ship 'destroyed' Iranian drone in Gulf 
The United States said on Thursday that a U.S. Navy ship had "destroyed" an Iranian drone in the Strait of Hormuz after the aircraft threatened the vessel, but Iran said it had no information about losing a drone. In the latest episode to stir tensions in the Gulf, U.S. President Donald Trump told an event at the White House that the drone had flown to within 1,000 yards (metres) of the USS Boxer and had ignored "multiple calls to stand down."

Jul 19 - IEA revising oil demand growth forecast down on slowing economy 
The International Energy Agency (IEA) is reducing its 2019 oil demand forecast due to a slowing global economy amid a U.S.-China trade spat, its executive director said on Thursday. The IEA is revising its 2019 global oil demand growth forecast to 1.1 million barrels per day (bpd) and may cut it again if the global economy and especially China shows further weakness, Fatih Birol said.

Jul 19 - Russian oil output back to OPEC deal levels -Novak 
Russia has restored its oil output to levels agreed under a deal between OPEC and non-OPEC oil exporters and production in the last half of July will rise from the first half, Energy Minister Alexander Novak said on Thursday. Russia's production plunged to almost a three-year low in early July due high organic chloride content found in oil in April, which disrupted pipeline exports.

Jul 19 - U.S. ethanol plants expected to cut output on poor margins, oversupply 
U.S. ethanol plants are expected to sharply curtail production in the weeks ahead as steep Midwest corn prices and the U.S.-China trade war have led to weak margins and oversupply, industry sources said. Margins to produce ethanol in the Corn Belt - where most U.S. production takes place - have fallen to a four-year seasonal low, while ethanol inventories are at the highest seasonally since at least 2010. Production hit its highest seasonal level since 2010, the earliest data available.

Jul 19 - Expiring US solar subsidy spurs rush for panels
America’s biggest solar power developers are stockpiling panels to lock in a 30% federal tax credit set to start phasing out next year, a strategy that could backfire if projects do not materialize or panel prices slide substantially. Duke Energy, 8minute Solar Energy and Shell-backed Silicon Ranch are among those working to claim the full subsidy, which is available to firms that either start construction or spend 5% of a project’s capital cost by the end of 2019. Consumers who purchase residential solar this year are eligible for the full tax credit, but the rules that allow the subsidy to be locked in now for systems installed much later apply only to companies.

Jul 19 - China's refiners want tax cuts before making cleaner shipping fuel- sources 
Chinese oil refiners want changes to tax laws on the consumption and sale of fuel oil in order to start producing low-sulphur marine fuel when new global clean fuel rules start in 2020, four executives at Chinese oil companies said this week. China's central government must waive a 1,218 yuan ($177.11) per tonne consumption tax and offer rebates of the 13% value-added tax currently levied on fuel oil to allow the country's refiners to economically produce the very low-sulphur fuel oil (VLSFO) needed to meet the rules, officials at China Chemical and Petroleum Corp, PetroChina and China National Offshore Oil Co said.

Jul 19 - Icahn launches proxy fight after stalled talks with Occidental CEO 
Activist investor Carl Icahn formally launched on Thursday a proxy fight against Occidental Petroleum to win control of four board seats, a regulatory filing showed, after talks with the oil company's CEO failed to reach an agreement. Icahn, who owns 4.4% of Occidental shares, said last month he planned to launch a proxy fight to oust and replace four Occidental directors. Icahn has blasted the Houston-based oil and gas producer for failing to give owners a say on its proposed $38 billion acquisition of Anadarko Petroleum, which he has called "misguided and hugely overpriced". 

Jul 19 - Total sells tainted Russian oil to PKN Orlen's Lithuania refinery - sources 
France's Total has sold a cargo of contaminated Russian Urals oil to Poland's PKN Orlen for its refinery in Lithuania, three sources familiar with the shipment said. PKN Orlen said it had agreed a deal in April to buy a cargo of Russian oil before any contamination was found. It said the crude was being diluted with clean oil so it could be processed in its Lithuanian refinery. The firm did not name the seller.

Jul 19 - Bulging fuel stocks put spotlight on slack oil consumption: Kemp 
Sluggish consumption growth is depressing oil prices even as Saudi Arabia and its allies try to prop up the market by cutting their production. U.S. refineries have so far this year processed 48 million barrels of crude and other liquids, less than at the same point in 2018, according to an analysis of weekly data from the U.S. Energy Information Administration.

Jul 18 - Oil service firms eye new survival tactics amid weak U.S. market 
Packers Plus Energy Services, a company built on the North American shale oil boom, is turning to the Middle East to weather a new round of spending cuts by producers amid warnings of a looming oil glut. Oil production has outpaced demand by 900,000 barrels per day (bpd) this year, according to the International Energy Agency, which expects increases to add a net 136 million barrels to the global surplus by March. Spending cuts by producers also have sharply cut service providers' margins, a June survey of 60 providers by the Dallas Federal Reserve Bank revealed. 

Jul 18 - U.S. crude oil stockpiles drop amid Barry, fuel posts large builds - EIA  
U.S. crude oil stockpiles fell more than expected last week, while gasoline and distillate inventories rose sharply, the Energy Information Administration said on Wednesday, due to the impact of the first major hurricane to hit the U.S. Gulf of Mexico this season. Crude and gasoline futures turned lower after the report. U.S. crude fell 39 cents per barrel to trade at $57.24 a barrel by 11:09 a.m. EDT [1509 GMT], while gasoline futures traded down 0.45 cent to $1.8867 a gallon.

Jul 18 - Does renewables pioneer Germany risk running out of power?  
Germany, a poster child for responsible energy, is renouncing nuclear and coal. The problem is, say many power producers and grid operators, it may struggle to keep the lights on. The country, the biggest electricity market in the European Union, is abandoning nuclear power by 2022 due to safety concerns compounded by the Fukushima disaster and phasing out coal plants over the next 19 years to combat climate change.

Jul 18 - Russia's Transneft, oil firms clash over pipeline system clean-up 
Major Russian oil companies have challenged a plan by Transneft that aims to resolve a problem of tainted oil stuck in Russia's pipeline and storage system by diluting it with clean crude, four company sources said on Wednesday. They said mixing the crude would undermine the quality and price of Russian exports for longer, as it might take until mid-2020 to fully flush out Transneft's pipeline network, rather than emptying it now and selling the tainted crude at a big discount.

Jul 18 - Eni files fraud complaint, rejigs trading arm over oil tanker fiasco 
Eni has filed a fraud complaint against its former head of oil trading over a suspect Iraqi crude oil shipment, amid concerns inside the Italian oil major that the failed delivery may have included Iranian crude targeted by U.S. sanctions. In the filing to the Milan prosecutor's office Eni accused its former head of trading and operations, Alessandro Des Dorides, of misleading all parties to the deal and hiding the role of a small Italian oil trading firm, Napag.

Jul 18 - Seeking to avoid escalation, ships deploy unarmed guards to navigate Gulf 
Shipping companies are hiring unarmed security guards for voyages through the Middle East Gulf as an extra safeguard after a wave of attacks in the region, security companies involved said. Relations between Iran and the West are increasingly strained after Britain seized an Iranian tanker in Gibraltar this month. Britain also said last week that one of its warships had to fend off Iranian vessels seeking to block a UK-owned tanker from passing through the Strait of Hormuz.

Jul 18 - Small U.S. refiners vow to sue EPA if it fails to issue 2018 waiver rulings in 60 days 
Small U.S. refineries plan to sue Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) in 60 days, if the agency by then fails to issue its decisions on 2018 petitions for waivers from the nation's biofuel laws, refiners said in a letter on Wednesday. The waiver program, which exempts small refiners in financial turmoil from their obligation to blend ethanol into gasoline, have been a source of contention between the rivaling corn and oil industries since U.S. President Donald Trump ordered a review of it after hearing complaints from farmers.

Jul 17 - Asia refiners test the waters with exports of IMO 2020-compliant fuel 
Refineries in Taiwan and South Korea are testing the market for fuels that meet new rules for low-sulphur ship fuel starting next year, exporting some cargoes of very low-sulphur fuel oil (VLSFO) this month. Oil market participants are uncertain what kind of fuel product shipping companies will use to meet the International Maritime Organization's (IMO) 0.5% sulphur standard for ship fuels starting in 2020. The VLSFO shipments demonstrate that this type of fuel is a viable option that refineries could readily market.

Jul 17 - U.S., China will be world's biggest LNG exporter and importer in 2024 -IEA 
The United States and China will become the world's biggest liquefied natural gas (LNG) exporters and importers, respectively, in five years, according to projections by the International Energy Agency (IEA). U.S. LNG exports are expected to rocket to over 100 billion cubic meters (bcm) in 2024, dislodging current market leaders Australia and Qatar, Peter Fraser, Head of the Gas, Coal and Power Markets Division at IEA, said on Tuesday.

Jul 17 - U.S. offshore oil production remains cut by 58% -U.S. government 
More than half the daily crude production in the U.S. Gulf of Mexico remained offline on Tuesday in the wake of Hurricane Barry, the U.S. drilling regulator said, as most oil companies were re-staffing facilities to resume production. Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement (BSEE) said 1.1 million barrels per day (bpd) of oil, or 58% of the region's total, and 1.4 billion cubic feet per day (cfd) of natural gas output remained shut.

Jul 17 - UAE plans oil trade overhaul to boost Middle Eastern clout 
The United Arab Emirates' state-run ADNOC, long seen as one of the most conservative oil firms in the Middle East, plans an overhaul for its trading operations as it seeks to emulate the success of rival oil majors and bolster its regional influence. The company has splurged on hiring former employees of private-sector peers and wants to launch a regional oil benchmark, possibly this year, similar to international markers Brent and WTI, four sources familiar with the plans said.

Jul 17 - Mexico unveils Pemex business plan, but banks underwhelmed  
Mexico on Tuesday unveiled parts of a keenly awaited business plan meant to bring the world's most indebted oil company back from the abyss, but its vow of $7.2 billion in government support failed to dispel worries of a ratings downgrade. Octavio Romero, CEO of Petroleos Mexicanos, or Pemex, presented the broad outlines of the 200-page plan at a news conference, saying a complete version would be published later on Tuesday.

Jul 17 - Freight fuel prices subdued as economy outweighs IMO: Kemp 
Refining margins for diesel and gasoil delivered next year are wilting as concerns about a recession-driven drop in consumption replace earlier fears about a shortage in fuel availability caused by new maritime regulations. Until recently, distillate consumption was expected to rise substantially from the start of next year as a result of new marine pollution rules introduced by the International Maritime Organization (IMO).

Jul 16 - Changing habits: China's pig farms clean up to beat swine fever 
A devastating outbreak of African swine fever that has killed millions of pigs in China is changing attitudes in a country where farm hygiene has often been seen as lax by international standards. From farms to feed mills to transport, people involved in the pork industry say biosecurity has been tightened, with sales of disinfectants and truck cleaning washes booming as farmers try to fend off the virus.

Jul 16 - U.S. Gulf of Mexico oil, gas producers begin restarting after Barry 
U.S. oil companies on Monday began restoring some of the nearly 74% of production that was shut at U.S. Gulf of Mexico platforms ahead of Hurricane Barry, the U.S. offshore drilling regulator said. There were 1.3 million barrels per day (bpd) of oil production offline in the U.S.-regulated areas of the Gulf of Mexico on Monday, about 80,000 barrels fewer than on Sunday, according to the U.S. Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement (BSEE).

Jul 16 - U.S. shale oil output forecast to hit record 8.55 million bpd in August 
U.S. oil output from seven major shale formations is expected to rise by about 49,000 barrels per day (bpd) in August, to a record 8.55 million bpd, the U.S. Energy Information Administration said in its monthly drilling productivity report on Monday. The largest change is forecast in the Permian Basin of Texas and New Mexico, where output is expected to climb by 34,000 bpd, to a fresh peak of about 4.21 million bpd in August. That was however, the smallest increase since production declined in January.

Jul 16 - Japan shows coal's dilemma: More needed now, less in future: Russell 
The dilemma facing thermal coal miners is neatly encapsulated by the current dynamics of Japan, where robust short-term demand contrasts with a diminishing long-term outlook. Japan, the world's third-biggest coal importer behind China and India, is planning on returning coal-fired power plants with a combined capacity of more than 10 gigawatts (GW) in the next few weeks in order to meet peak summer demand. 

Jul 16 - European gas prices exceed Asian spot LNG, shuts arbitrage 
European gas hub prices have risen above the price of liquefied natural gas (LNG) on the Asian spot market in a rare occurrence that largely rules out arbitrage of LNG cargoes from the Atlantic to the Pacific basins. Dutch and British month-ahead gas prices exceeded Asian spot LNG in April for the first time in four years. Asian LNG prices tend to be higher due to the huge demand there with few alternative supplies.

Jul 16 - Hedge funds stick to the sidelines in oil: Kemp 
Hedge funds and other money managers left their petroleum positions essentially unchanged last week as the poor outlook for consumption offset production concerns stemming from tensions in the Middle East. The net long position in petroleum futures and options remained at 563 million barrels in the week to July 9, according to records published by regulators and exchanges.

Jul 15 - China June coal output hits record high as miners ramp up ahead of summer 
China's coal output rose in June from the previous month to a record high, official data showed on Monday, as miners ramped up production to ensure supply ahead of peak summer demand for electricity. The world's top coal producer churned out 333.35 million tonnes of coal in June, up 6.7% from May and up 10.4% year-on-year, data from the National Bureau of Statistics showed.

Jul 15 - China June crude oil throughput rises to record on new plants 
China's crude oil throughput rose to a record in June, up 7.7% from a year earlier, following the start-up of two new, large refineries, official data showed on Monday. Crude processing volumes last month reached 53.7 million tonnes, or about 13.07 million barrels per day (bpd), beating the previous record in April of 12.68 million bpd, according to figures from the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS).

Jul 15 - Louisiana refinery preps for restart as Storm Barry blows over 
Phillips 66 was preparing on Sunday to begin a restart on Monday of its southeast Louisiana refinery, which was shut because of the threat of Tropical Storm Barry, the company said. Barry has shut in 73%, or 1.38 million barrels per day (bpd), of crude oil production in the U.S.-regulated areas of the Gulf of Mexico, the U.S. Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement (BSEE) said on Sunday. That is a 3 percentage point increase from Saturday.

Jul 15 - S.Korea imports no oil from Iran in June; H1 imports fall 37% 
South Korea imported no crude oil from Iran for a second month in June following the end of a U.S. sanctions wavier, with Iranian imports for the first half dropping 36.9% from a year earlier, customs data showed on Monday. South Korea, the world's fifth-largest crude oil importer and one of Iran's major oil customers, stopped importing Iranian crude from May after waivers on U.S. sanctions against Iran ended at the start of that month.

Jul 15 - UK to facilitate release of Iranian tanker if it gets Syria guarantees-Hunt 
British foreign minister Jeremy Hunt told his Iranian counterpart on Saturday that Britain would facilitate the release of the detained Grace 1 oil tanker if Tehran gave guarantees it would not go to Syria. The tanker was seized last week by British Royal Marines off the coast of the British Mediterranean territory of Gibraltar on suspicion of violating sanctions against Syria.

Jul 12 - Storm Barry cuts half U.S. Gulf Coast oil output, flooding fears close coastal refinery
An intensifying tropical storm in the U.S. Gulf of Mexico on Thursday cut more than half the region's oil output, with energy companies evacuating staff from nearly 200 offshore facilities and a coastal refinery. Oil firms shut more than 1 million barrels per day of oil production, 53% of Gulf of Mexico's output, and 1.2 billion cubic feet per day of natural gas production, according to a U.S. regulator.

Jul 12 - Britain says it fended off Iranian attempt to block oil tanker
Three Iranian vessels tried to block a British-owned tanker passing through the strait that controls the flow of Middle East oil to the world, but backed off when confronted by a Royal Navy warship, Britain said on Thursday. A week after Britain seized an Iranian tanker accused of violating sanctions on Syria, London said the British Heritage, operated by oil company BP, had been approached in the Strait of Hormuz between Iran and the Arabian peninsula.

Jul 12 - OPEC sees lower 2020 demand for its oil, points to surplus
OPEC on Thursday forecast world demand for its crude will decline next year as rivals pump more, pointing to the return of a surplus despite an OPEC-led pact to restrain supplies. The drop in demand for OPEC crude highlights the sustained boost that OPEC's policy to support oil prices by supply cuts is giving to U.S. shale and other rival supply. 

Jul 12 - Cargill quarterly profit dives 41% on trade tensions, U.S. floods
Global commodities trader Cargill Inc reported a 41% drop in adjusted quarterly profit on Thursday, citing supply disruptions stemming from the U.S.-China trade war and also flooding in the central United States that hit marketing and transportation of grains and livestock. Cargill, the largest privately held U.S. company, said adjusted operating profit fell to $476 million in the fiscal fourth quarter ended May 31, from $809 million a year earlier, as three of its four business units posted lower year-on-year results. 

Jul 12 - King coal rules in Japan as power utilities in thrall to low-cost fuel
Japanese utilities will rely on the return of coal-fired power plants from maintenance to meet peak electricity demand this summer, highlighting the country's dependence on the more polluting fuel instead of natural gas. Coal-power stations capable of producing 10,437 megawatts (MW) of electricity will be fired up in the next few weeks, a Reuters survey of the companies shows. 

Jul 12 - U.S. oil makes it to Ukraine in another blow to Moscow
U.S. crude exports are gaining traction in Europe as even Ukraine turns into a significant consumer of American barrels at the expense of Russian supplies amid heightened U.S. political pressure on Moscow and problems over contaminated Russian oil. Ukraine this month received its first ever barrels from the United States, according to Refinitiv Eikon flows data, as the tanker Wisdom Venture unloaded 80,000 tonnes of Bakken crude in Odessa on July 6 for the Kremenchug refinery, the port said.

Jul 12 - Egypt's arrears to foreign oil firms fall to $900 mln at end of June - minister
Egypt's arrears to foreign oil companies declined to $900 million at the end of June from $1.2 billion a year ago, the petroleum minister said on Thursday, adding that the remaining amount would be paid soon. The Egyptian government had told the International Monetary Fund in a letter in January it intended to "eliminate" arrears by the end of June.

Jul 11 - U.S. oil companies slash Gulf of Mexico production as storm bears down
U.S. oil producers on Wednesday cut nearly a third of Gulf of Mexico crude output as what could be one of the first major storms of the Atlantic hurricane season threatened offshore oil production and began soaking Louisiana with heavy rains. Fifteen production platforms and four rigs were evacuated in the north central Gulf of Mexico, according to a U.S. regulator as oil firms moved workers to safety ahead of a storm expected to become a hurricane by Friday.

Jul 11 - U.S. crude stocks fall nearly 10 mln barrels - EIA
U.S. crude oil stockpiles fell by nearly 10 million barrels last week, far more than expected, as refineries processed the most crude oil since January, the Energy Information Administration said on Wednesday. Crude inventories fell by 9.5 million barrels in the week to July 5, compared with analysts' expectations for a decrease of 3.1 million barrels.

Jul 11 - Enbridge eases oil volume terms for Mainline pipeline in response to small producers' fears
Enbridge Inc has lowered oil-shipping requirements on its Mainline pipeline by nearly two-thirds, the company confirmed on Wednesday, a move likely to satisfy smaller producers that feared they would be elbowed out by the company's initial requirements. Enbridge now requires minimum volume commitments of 2,200 barrels per day (bpd), down from the 6,000 bpd commitment it previously sought, Enbridge spokesman Jesse Semko told Reuters. 

Jul 11 - Iranian boats 'harass' British tanker in the Gulf - U.S. officials
Five boats believed to belong to Iranian Revolutionary Guards approached a British oil tanker in the Gulf on Wednesday and asked it to stop in Iranian waters close by, but withdrew after a British warship warned them, U.S. officials said. Britain's Ministry of Defence had no immediate comment.

Jul 11 - Asia's spot LNG benchmark goes digital with launch of electronic platform
Price agency S&P Global Platts and clearing house Intercontinental Exchange Inc said on Thursday they are launching an electronic platform known as eWindow to the liquefied natural gas (LNG) market. Unlike oil, which has several liquid financial and physical trading platforms and exchanges, LNG markets are still evolving, with companies jostling to lead the space.

Jul 11 - Trump intervention delaying EPA biofuel waiver action, sources say
U.S. President Donald Trump’s request for a review of the administration’s expanded use of biofuel waivers for oil refiners is holding up its decisions on 2018 applications, according to three sources familiar with the matter, two of whom said Trump may soon host a meeting on the issue. Trump had ordered members of his Cabinet to review the controversial waiver program, which exempts small refiners in financial turmoil from their obligation to blend ethanol into gasoline, last month after hearing from farmers angry about the issue during his recent Midwest tour.

Jul 10 - U.S. crude oil output seen rising to record high in 2019 - EIA
U.S. crude oil production will rise to an all-time high of 12.36 million barrels per day (bpd) in 2019 from a record high of 10.96 million bpd last year, the Energy Information Administration's Short Term Energy Outlook (STEO) said on Tuesday. The latest July output projection for 2019 was up from EIA's 12.32 million bpd forecast in June.

Jul 10 - Oil majors evacuate U.S. Gulf platform staff before storm
Major U.S. oil producers on Tuesday began evacuating and shutting in production at their deepwater Gulf of Mexico platforms in advance of a tropical disturbance expected to become a storm this week. A tropical depression is expected to form late on Wednesday or Thursday, according to the National Hurricane Center, and move westward across the northern Gulf of Mexico, home to dozens of oil- and gas-producing facilities.

Jul 10 - Russian output falls to three-year low as oil rivals clash
Russian oil production fell close to a three-year low in early July, as output was undermined by a row between Russian oil pipeline monopoly Transneft and the country's biggest producer Rosneft. Transneft curbed oil intake from Yuganskneftegaz, Rosneft's main upstream unit, the oil producer said, hurting production that has already been depressed by an oil contamination crisis.

Jul 10 - Canadian oil companies see output cuts easing as rail capacity grows
Major Canadian oil companies, which publicly disagreed over the Alberta government’s forced curtailments this year, are in lockstep over how to end the production limits and reinvigorate the battered industry. Senior executives from Suncor Energy, Canadian Natural Resources, Imperial Oil Ltd and Cenovus Energy said at a TD Securities investor conference in Calgary on Tuesday that they are in talks with Premier Jason Kenney’s Alberta government. 

Jul 10 - Aramco awards $18 bln in contracts to boost capacity at Marjan, Berri oilfields
Saudi Aramco has awarded 34 contracts with a total value of $18 billion for engineering, procurement and construction projects at its Marjan and Berri oilfields, the company said. Aramco plans to boost production capacity at the two fields by 550,000 barrels per day of Arabian crude oil and 2.5 billion standard cubic feet a day of gas, the company said in a statement.

Jul 10 - Chevron Phillips, Qatar Petroleum sign $8 bln petrochemical deal
Chevron Phillips Chemical and Qatar Petroleum signed an agreement on Tuesday to develop an $8 billion petrochemical plant along the U.S. Gulf Coast, the second pact between the companies to build such plants in the last few weeks. The U.S. Gulf Coast II Petrochemical Project will include a 2,000 kilotons per year (KTA) ethylene cracker and two 1,000 KTA polyethylene units. 

Jul 10 - Dry freight rates to ride high on ship fuel refits - Cargill
With the world's largest dry cargo ships coming out of service for refits to comply with tougher rules on emissions, charter rates are expected to remain strong, a top Cargill executive said, after posting 7-fold gains already this year. "There are a lot of ships - especially on the capesizes - that will go into scrubber fitting which basically means they will be out of service for at least 25 days each to do so," Jan Dieleman, president of trading firm Cargill's ocean transportation business, told Reuters.

Jul 10 - U.S. refiners urge EPA to keep biofuel waiver requests secret from USDA
A law firm representing small U.S. refineries has urged the Environmental Protection Agency to keep refiners' applications for waivers from the nation's biofuel policy secret from the Department of Agriculture, arguing that the petitions include confidential business information. The request, made by Perkins Coie in a letter to the EPA dated July 8, adds to mounting pressure from representatives of the refining industry for the Trump administration to box the USDA out of the controversial waiver program.

Jul 10 - Any disruption to oil exports through Hormuz will be "major obstacle" to Iraq's economy - PM
Iraqi Prime Minister Adel Abdul Mahdi said on Tuesday any disruption to oil exports through the Strait of Hormuz will be a "major obstacle" for his country's economy which has too few oil export outlets. His government was studying contingency plans to deal with possible disruption, including looking at alternative routes for oil exports, Abdul Mahdi said.

Jul 09 - Squeezed by sanctions, Venezuela sells oil to tiny Turkish firm
With U.S. sanctions blocking Venezuela from selling oil to the United States, state-owned energy firm PDVSA has turned to several little-known buyers that include a tiny Turkish company with no refineries but ties to President Nicolas Maduro's government, according to internal documents and a PDVSA source. Until recently, some of the world's largest petroleum and refining firms, including U.S. companies Chevron and Valero Energy, lined up to take Venezuelan oil cargoes and PDVSA had a rigorous vetting process to ensure potential buyers had the capacity to pay.

Jul 09 - Seized supertanker was full to capacity with crude - Gibraltar
Tests have shown a supertanker seized in Gibraltar last week was fully loaded with crude oil, the government of the British territory said on Monday. British Royal Marines boarded the ship, Grace 1, off the coast of Gibraltar on Thursday and seized it for trying to take oil to Syria in violation of European Union sanctions. 

Jul 09 - Hedge funds sell crude as economy fears trump OPEC cuts: Kemp
Hedge funds sold more Brent futures and options last week as concerns about the global economy trumped the decision by the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) and its allies to extend output cuts. Hedge funds and other money managers sold another 7 million barrels of Brent derivatives in the week to July 2, according to position data published by ICE Futures Europe.

Jul 09 - China's war on pollution could boost solar power - study
China's efforts to reduce chronic air pollution could increase its ability to generate solar power by up to 13% by allowing more sunlight to reach the earth, according to a new study published on Tuesday. China's so-called photovoltaic potential fell by an average of up to 15% between 1960 and 2015 as a result of pollution, climate researchers from Switzerland, the Netherlands and China said in a report published by the Nature Energy journal.

Jul 09 - U.S. oil output gains to outpace global demand growth until 2020 -Goldman
Goldman Sachs said growth in U.S. shale production is likely to outpace that of global demand at least through 2020 and limit gains in oil prices despite output curbs led by the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries. The Wall Street bank forecast U.S. oil output growth at 1.3 million barrels per day (bpd) and 1.2 million bpd in 2019 and 2020 respectively, which compared with its global demand growth expectations of 0.8 million bpd and 1.6 million bpd respectively for the same periods.

Jul 08 - UK-flagged tanker reported 'safe and well' after stop in Gulf
The UK-flagged supertanker Pacific Voyager that halted in the Gulf on Saturday is "safe and well," a British official told Reuters, after Iran dismissed reports its Revolutionary Guards had seized the vessel. A Revolutionary Guards commander on Friday had threatened to seize a British ship in retaliation for the capture by Royal Marines of Iranian supertanker Grace 1 in Gibraltar. 

Jul 08 - Hedge funds chart course through 'IMO 2020' storm 
Shipping companies, refineries, freight derivatives or diesel cracks? Investment funds are placing their bets as the shipping sector prepares for new rules limiting sulphur emissions from ocean-going vessels. Ever since the International Maritime Organization said the maximum sulphur content in marine fuel must drop to 0.5% from 3.5% from 2020, shipping companies have been wrestling with how to comply without driving up costs at an uncertain time for global trade.

 Jul 08 - OPEC output hits new low on Trump's sanctions, supply pact - Reuters survey
OPEC oil output sank to a new five-year low in June as a rise in Saudi supply did not offset losses in Iran and Venezuela due to U.S. sanctions and other outages elsewhere in the group, a Reuters survey found. The 14-member Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries pumped 29.60 million barrels per day (bpd) last month, the survey showed, down 170,000 bpd from May's revised figure and the lowest OPEC total since 2014, the survey showed.

Jul 08 - Oil Minister Zanganeh says hopeful Iran's oil exports will improve - TV
Iran's Oil Minister Bijan Zanganeh said on Sunday that he was very hopeful of an improvement in the country's crude exports, state TV reported, in spite of tightened U.S. sanctions on Tehran's main source of income. His comments came as Iran faces further U.S. sanctions after announcing on Sunday it will shortly boost its uranium enrichment above a cap set by a landmark 2015 nuclear deal. 

Jul 08 - Philadelphia refinery closing reverses two years of U.S. capacity gains
The planned closing of an oil refinery in Philadelphia damaged by a massive fire last month will reverse nearly two years of capacity gains at U.S. refineries, according to a Reuters analysis of government data. Philadelphia Energy Solutions has said it will shut its 335,000 barrels per day (bpd) refinery this summer after a June 21 fire tore through a portion of the plant, destroying an alkylation unit. 

Jul 08 - U.S. EPA proposes hike in 2020 biofuel mandate but waiver volumes draw ire
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) on Friday proposed refiners increase the volume of biofuels blended into their annual fuel output but did not reallocate the waived amounts under the hardship program, drawing ire from powerful corn and biofuel groups as well as Republican senators. The EPA is charged with setting biofuel blending requirements for the refining industry as part of the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS), a more than decade-old regulation that is aimed at helping farmers and reducing U.S. dependence on oil. 

Jul 08 - North Sea oil producer Siccar Point eyes sale - sources
Private equity-backed oil and gas producer Siccar Point is testing the waters for its potential sale later this year, hoping to attract interest for its mostly untapped North Sea resources, industry and banking sources said. Siccar Point has in recent days invited over a dozen companies to review data on its Corona Ridge area in the west of Shetlands area with the aim of selling down part of its 70% stake in the Cambo field, according to sources close to the process.

Jul 08 - German refinery halts Russian oil imports over contamination - Handelsblatt
The PCK refinery in eastern Germany has halted imports of Russian oil via the Druzhba pipeline after once again finding "slightly elevated" levels of organic chlorides, the refinery's owner Shell told Handelsblatt newspaper on Friday. The pipeline, which brings oil from deep inside Russia to much of eastern and central Europe, has been plagued by a contamination crisis that disrupted flows from the world's second-largest exporter of crude.

Jul 05 - Tehran fumes as Britain seizes Iranian oil tanker over Syria sanctions
British Royal Marines seized a giant Iranian oil tanker in Gibraltar on Thursday for trying to take oil to Syria in violation of EU sanctions, a dramatic step that drew Tehran's fury and could escalate its confrontation with the West. The Grace 1 tanker was impounded in the British territory on the southern tip of Spain after sailing around Africa, the long route from the Middle East to the mouth of the Mediterranean.

Jul 05 - Saudi Arabia lowers August Arab Light crude OSP to Asia
Saudi Aramco has set the August official selling price (OSP) for Arab Light crude for sale to Asia at $2.45 a barrel above Oman-Dubai quotes, Aramco said in a statement on Thursday. The price is 25 cents a barrel lower than the previous month. The August OSP for Arab Super Light crude was set at a premium of $4.45 a barrel while the OSP for Arab Extra Light crude was at a premium of $2.65 a barrel.

Jul 05 - Poland's PKN faces uphill battle to win EU nod for Lotos bid - sources
Poland's biggest oil refiner PKN Orlen is expected to face a full-scale EU antitrust investigation into its planned takeover of rival Lotos and may even face a veto due to their combined market share, people familiar with the matter said. State-run PKN said last year that it plans to buy at least a 53% stake in its nearest rival Lotos which has a market capitalisation of 15.9 billion zlotys ($4.23 billion), from the government.

Jul 05 - Asia feels pinch from higher Middle East oil shipping costs
Asian oil refiners are being squeezed by rising freight rates and insurance costs for shipping crude from the Middle East after attacks on ships in the Gulf last month, industry officials and analysts said. The Middle East accounts for more than two-thirds of Asia's oil supply and the attacks on tankers in the Gulf of Oman on June 13 have heightened security concerns among oil companies and shippers operating in the region.

Jul 05 - U.S. diesel consumption hit by economic slowdown: Kemp
U.S. consumption of diesel and other middle distillate fuels is decelerating in line with the wider slowdown in manufacturing and construction activity. Consumption of distillate fuel oil was up by 3% in the three months from February to April compared with the same period a year earlier, according to data from the U.S. Energy Information Administration.

Jul 04 - Europe boosts gasoline exports to U.S. after PES refinery fire
Gasoline exports from Europe to the U.S. East Coast rose sharply in early July after a fire at a major refinery in Philadelphia left a supply shortage in the densely populated region. Philadelphia Energy Solutions' (PES) 335,000 barrel-per-day (bpd) oil refining complex, the largest and oldest on the U.S. East Coast, is set to permanently shut down after it was hit by a devastating fire on June 21. 

Jul 04 - Crude and gasoline stockpiles down less than expected in week - EIA
U.S. crude and gasoline stockpiles fell less than forecast last week, while distillate inventories rose unexpectedly, the Energy Information Administration said on Wednesday. Crude pared gains after the report. U.S. crude was up 11 cents at $56.35 a barrel by 11:44 a.m. EDT (1544 GMT). Brent crude was up 60 cents at $63 a barrel.

Jul 04 - Future tense: Fastest-growing market Asia rethinks coal's prospects
After riding China's demand train for nearly two decades, Asia's coal industry is looking to a future of smaller markets and slimmer pickings, as buying declines in the world's second-biggest economy and climate change concerns blunt demand. By far the biggest user of coal-fired power, China is buying less thermal coal from global markets, said delegates to Asia's premier coal conference last month in Bali, both as renewables gain market share and as it digs up more of its own supply.

Jul 04 - Kazakhstan to divert some oil flows from Europe to China
Kazakhstan plans to increase oil exports to China to 6-7 million tonnes a year from just 1 million tonnes at the expense of shipments to Europe, starting from the second half of 2020, Deputy Energy Minister Aset Magauov told Reuters. In order to do this, the Central Asian nation will reverse the domestic Kenkiyak-Atyrau pipeline that is currently used to ship crude in a westerly direction. The move will reduce transit shipments through Russia's Transneft.

Jul 04 - U.S. oil drillers cut rigs for first week in three - Baker Hughes
U.S. energy firms this week reduced the number of oil rigs operating for the first time in three weeks as drillers follow through on plans to cut spending this year. Drillers cut five oil rigs in the week to July 3, bringing the total count down to 788, General Electric Co's Baker Hughes energy services firm said in its closely followed report on Wednesday.  

Jul 04 - Mexico's Pemex quietly pursues deepwater project amid pressure for tie-ups
Mexican state oil company Pemex is pursuing a risky Gulf of Mexico deepwater project despite vowing as recently as two weeks ago it would focus its limited resources elsewhere, according to a filing with the country's oil regulator. Pemex sought and won approval from the regulator in late May to drill a well under more than 10,000 feet (3,000 meters) of water that the company won at auction months before President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador was elected in a landslide victory last year.

Jul 03 - OPEC and allies extend oil supply cut in bid to boost prices
OPEC and its allies led by Russia agreed to extend oil output cuts until March 2020 on Tuesday, seeking to prop up the price of crude as the global economy weakens and U.S. production soars. The alliance, known as OPEC+, has been reducing oil supply since 2017 to prevent prices from sliding amid increasing competition from the United States, which has overtaken Russia and Saudi Arabia to become the world's top producer.

Jul 03 - Banks scramble to re-pitch for Aramco IPO roles - sources
Investment banks are scrambling to re-pitch to advise Saudi Aramco on a possible initial public offering, sources familiar with the matter said, with Saudi Arabia's energy minister confirming plans for the listing to proceed in 2020 or 2021. "Bankers previously involved in the IPO are pushing for meetings with Aramco," one of the sources said.

Jul 03 - Morgan Stanley cuts long-term Brent price view after OPEC supply cuts
Morgan Stanley lowered its long-term Brent price forecast on Tuesday and said the oil market is broadly balanced in 2019 after OPEC and its allies including Russia agreed to extend their production cuts by even longer than expected. The bank lowered its long-term Brent price forecast to $60 per barrel from $65 per barrel, while it expects prices for the global benchmark to fluctuate around $65 per barrel, from $67.5 per barrel previously, in the next three quarters.

Jul 03 - Under pressure from Trump, OPEC embraces Putin
When Vladimir Putin announced at the weekend that OPEC would extend oil production cuts, broadcasting a deal before the group had even met to approve it, the move angered some member nations. They were dismayed at the leading role non-OPEC Russia, once seen as an enemy in oil markets, was playing in shaping the group's policies.

Jul 03 - Occidental urges shareholders to reject activist Icahn's proposal
Occidental Petroleum Corp on Tuesday called on its shareholders to reject activist investor Carl Icahn's moves to launch a proxy fight for four seats on the company's board. The oil and gas producer, in a regulatory filing, said fixing a record date for the planned consent solicitation and the proposals of the Icahn Group "are not in the best interests of Occidental or its stockholders".

Jul 03 - China issues more crude import quotas for mostly private refiners - document
China has issued more crude oil import quotas for mostly private refiners that will allow them to bring in an additional 56.85 million tonnes for the remainder of 2019, a document reviewed by Reuters showed on Tuesday. This will bring the total quotas issued this year to 151 million tonnes of crude oil, or roughly 3.02 million barrels per day (bpd).

Jul 03 - U.S. oil production growth slows but OPEC+ should be wary: Kemp 
The once booming expansion rate of U.S. oil production has begun to slow in response to the downturn in prices since the end of the third quarter of 2018, government production figures show. U.S. crude and condensates production rose to a record 12.16 million barrels per day (bpd) in April, an increase of 1.69 million bpd or 16% compared with the same month a year earlier.

Jul 03 - U.S. crude to trickle onto new Gulf Coast lines as connections, storage opens -sources
A year-old bottleneck of crude in West Texas is shifting east as new pipelines prepare to begin operations without enough connections or storage for the smooth movement of shale oil to a U.S. Gulf Coast export hub, according to traders and analysts. The United States exported a record 3.8 million bpd of crude in late June after Congress lifted a 40-year export ban in late 2015.

Jul 02 - OPEC extends oil cut to prop up prices as economy weakens
OPEC agreed on Monday to extend oil supply cuts until March 2020 as the group's members overcame their differences in order to prop up the price of crude amid a weakening global economy and soaring U.S. production. The move will likely anger U.S. President Donald Trump, who has demanded OPEC leader Saudi Arabia supply more oil and help reduce prices at the pump if Riyadh wants U.S. military support in its standoff with arch-rival Iran.

Jul 02 - Russia cut June oil output by more than required in global pact
Russia reduced oil production in June by more than the amount agreed in a global deal to cut output, the energy minister and industry sources said on Monday, as the sector still felt the impact of a contaminated crude crisis that crippled exports. Russian Energy Minister Alexander Novak said that Russian oil output last month fell by 278,000 barrels per day (bpd) from an October 2018 baseline of 11.41 mln bpd, Russian news agencies reported, indicating output in June of about 11.13 million bpd.

Jul 02 - The Trump who tweeted wolf: commodities wary of U.S.-China trade news: Russell 
Have commodity markets reached the point where they are ignoring the tweets and rhetoric on U.S.-China trade talks, and are instead waiting for some concrete developments? Certainly the initial price action on Monday morning after U.S. President Donald Trump's latest comments hailing a resumption of trade talks with Beijing was subdued.

Jul 02 - Oil prices get a lift from short-covering: Kemp
Hedge fund managers have started to cover some of the bearish short positions in oil they established since late April, amid hopes for interest rate cuts and a trade truce between China and the United States. Hedge funds and other money managers increased their net long position in the six major petroleum futures and options contracts by 19 million barrels in the week to June 25.

Jul 02 - EPIC sets rates, terms for interim crude service on Permian to Corpus Christi pipeline
EPIC Crude Pipeline LP said it would charge shippers $5 per barrel for interim crude service on its converted natural gas liquids (NGL) pipeline from the Permian basin to the Corpus Christi, Texas, area, according to a regulatory filing on Monday. EPIC Crude will offer up to 400,000 barrels per day (bpd) of interim service capacity and will offer only uncommitted service during the interim service period, according to the filing with the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC).

Jul 02 - Exxon quarterly profit to feel pinch of weaker natural gas, chemical earnings
Exxon Mobil Corp said on Monday lower natural gas and chemical margins in its second quarter would offset improved crude and refining operations, pointing to flat profits sequentially and down from a year-earlier. The U.S. oil major said in a securities filing it expected improved crude prices to boost second-quarter profit by $400 million to $600 million.

Jul 01 - OPEC set for oil cut extension if Iran endorses pact
OPEC and its allies look set to extend oil supply cuts next week at least until the end of 2019 as Iraq joined top producers Saudi Arabia and Russia on Sunday in endorsing a policy aimed at propping up the price of crude amid a weakening global economy. Iran is the only major OPEC nation yet to have spoken publicly about a need to extend production cuts. 

Jul 01 - Russia agrees with Saudi Arabia to extend OPEC+ oil output deal
Russia has agreed with Saudi Arabia to extend by six to nine months a deal with OPEC on reducing oil output, Russian President Vladimir Putin said, as oil prices come under renewed pressure from rising U.S. supplies and a slowing global economy. Saudi Energy Minister Khalid al-Falih said on Sunday that the deal would most likely be extended by nine months and no deeper reductions were needed.

Jul 01 - The Trump who tweeted wolf: commodities wary of U.S.-China trade news: Russell
Have commodity markets reached the point where they are ignoring the tweets and rhetoric on U.S.-China trade talks, and are instead waiting for some concrete developments? Certainly the initial price action on Monday morning after U.S. President Donald Trump's latest comments hailing a resumption of trade talks with Beijing was subdued.

Jul 01 - U.S. shale's growth rate peaked last year, slower gains ahead
The U.S. shale industry’s sizzling growth rate likely peaked last year, according to a survey of major forecasters, cooled by investors demanding financial returns over increased oil output. Around 1.3 million barrels per day (bpd) of new U.S. shale oil production should hit the market this year, down from around 1.5 million new bpd that arrived in 2018, according to the average of recent forecasts from four energy research firms and the U.S. government.

Jul 01 - Venezuela reshuffles oil output to favor Asia exports amid sanctions - documents
Venezuelan state oil firm PDVSA is revamping one of its major processing operations geared to supplying U.S. buyers to produce instead a crude grade favored by Asian refiners, according to internal documents seen by Reuters. Sweeping U.S. sanctions on the government of President Nicolas Maduro since January have effectively halted its oil sales to U.S. refiners, historically among the largest receivers of Venezuelan crude.

Jul 01 - U.S. issues mixed report on Alaska Gasline's LNG export plant
U.S. energy regulators issued a report on Friday for Alaska Gasline Development Corp's proposed $43.4 billion Alaska liquefied natural gas (LNG) project that found it would provide economic benefits to the state but could hurt the environment. In the report, known as an environmental impact statement, staff at the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) concluded construction and operation of the project would result in "temporary, long-term, and permanent impacts on the environment."

Jun 28 - OPEC set for rollover, may discuss deeper oil curbs - Iraq
OPEC is expected to roll over a deal on cutting supplies at a meeting next week and discuss deepening the curbs that have been in place since Jan. 1, Iraq's oil minister on Thursday. A deal between the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries and allies including Russia to curb output by 1.2 million barrels runs out at the end of June. 

Jun 28 - Michigan sues Enbridge in U.S., seeks to shut oil pipeline through Great Lakes
The U.S. state of Michigan has filed a lawsuit asking for an Enbridge Inc oil pipeline that runs under the Straits of Mackinac in the Great Lakes to be decommissioned, Michigan's attorney general said on Thursday. The Line 5 oil pipeline ships 540,000 barrels per day of light crude oil and propane and is a critical part of Enbridge's Mainline network, which delivers the bulk of Canadian crude exports to the United States.

Jun 28 - Plains' Cactus II oil pipeline to begin line fill in a week -source
Plains All American Pipeline LP's 670,000 barrel-per-day (bpd) Cactus II oil pipeline system from the Permian basin to the Corpus Christi, Texas area will commence line fill within a week, a source with direct knowledge of the matter said on Thursday. Line fill refers to the process of filling oil in a new pipeline before commercial deliveries can begin.

Jun 28 - Alberta eases oil production curtailments for August
The government of Alberta, Canada's main crude-producing province, eased crude oil production curtailments for August on Thursday, setting the limit at 3.74 million barrels per day, compared with 3.71 million bpd in July. Alberta introduced mandatory curtailments effective Jan. 1 this year to tackle pipeline congestion that left crude stranded in storage tanks in the province and widened the discount on Canadian oil versus U.S. crude to record levels.

Jun 28 - Trade tensions put energy transition at risk - BP chairman
Trade tensions risk throwing the global economy's transition to greener energy into disarray and could hurt energy companies' preparations towards it, BP Chairman Helge Lund said as leaders of the world's largest economies gather for talks in Japan. Lund, in his first interview since taking office in January, said BP would rather see a rapid, orderly phasing out of fossil fuels than a delayed and disorganised transition.

Jun 28 - Russia to pay Kazakhstan $15/b for tainted oil in crisis breakthrough
Russia will pay Kazakhstan compensation of $15 per barrel for tainted oil, industry sources said on Thursday describing the move as a breakthrough in an oil contamination crisis that disrupted Russian and Kazakh flows earlier this year. Three industry sources said a preliminary deal had been agreed by Russian pipeline monopoly Transneft with Kazakhstan and the total sum will amount to $76 million, which includes quality losses, demurrage and storage costs.

Jun 27 - After fire, Philadelphia Energy Solutions to permanently shut oil refinery
Philadelphia Energy Solutions (PES) will seek to permanently shut its oil refinery in the city after a massive fire caused substantial damage to the complex, the company confirmed on Wednesday, a day after sources told Reuters about the plans. "The recent fire at the refinery complex has made it impossible for us to continue operations. 

Jun 27 - U.S. crude stocks slump nearly 13 mln bbls as exports hit record high - EIA
U.S. crude oil stocks fell by nearly 13 million barrels last week, the most in nearly three years, as exports hit a record high, the Energy Information Administration said on Wednesday. Crude inventories fell 12.8 million barrels in the week ended June 21, far surpassing analyst expectations for a decrease of 2.5 million barrels.

Jun 27 - Trump's sanctions cut more OPEC oil output than OPEC itself
Oil output in Iran and Venezuela, under U.S. sanctions, has fallen by more than that of other OPEC members party to a supply cut pact, suggesting President Trump's policies have had a greater impact on oil production than OPEC itself. The sanctions have deepened the impact of supply cuts agreed by the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries, which is expected at meetings with its allies next Monday and Tuesday in Vienna to renew the accord.

Jun 27 - Icahn steps up fight with Occidental over deal, wants board seats
Billionaire investor Carl Icahn on Wednesday ratcheted up his fight with Occidental Petroleum over its pending purchase of rival Anadarko Petroleum by calling for a special shareholder meeting where he hopes to win board seats. In a regulatory filing, Icahn said he planned to oust and replace four Occidental directors and change the company's charter through a stockholder consent solicitation to prevent it from ever engineering a similar takeover again.

Jun 27 - Russia to pay Kazakhstan fixed rate for contaminated oil in crisis breakthrough
Russia has agreed to pay Kazakhstan a fixed per-barrel rate of compensation for tainted oil, industry sources said on Wednesday, a breakthrough in an oil contamination crisis that disrupted Russian and Kazakh flows earlier this year. It is the first such deal and could serve as a template for other agreements, including with Western buyers of Russian oil.

Jun 27 - Slow pace of reforms spurring higher coal imports by Indian utilities
Coal imports by Indian utilities are surging after the government failed to open the industry to competition, despite passing a liberalization policy 16 months ago, because of bureaucratic indecision and resistance from unions, industry and government officials said. Utilities in India, which holds the world's fifth-largest reserves of the fuel, imported over 40% more coal during January to April compared with a year ago, data from the Central Electricity Authority showed.

Jun 26 - Philadelphia Energy Solutions seeks to permanently shut oil refinery - sources
Philadelphia Energy Solutions (PES) is expected to seek to permanently shut its oil refinery in the city after a massive fire caused substantial damage to the complex, two sources familiar with the plans said on Tuesday. Shutting the refinery, the largest and oldest on the U.S. East Coast, would cost hundreds of jobs and squeeze gasoline supplies in the busiest, most densely populated corridor of the United States.

Jun 26 - Russia leads as top crude supplier to China, overtakes Saudi
Russia became the largest crude oil supplier to China in May, supported by robust demand from private refiners and alongside a fall in supplies from Iran. Imports from Russia came in at 6.36 million tonnes in May, or 1.50 million barrels per day (bpd), data from the General Administration of Customs showed on Tuesday.

Jun 26 - Saudi Aramco can meet customer demand despite Gulf tension - CEO
Saudi Aramco can meet the oil needs of customers using its spare capacity despite developments in the Gulf that are a cause for concern, the head of the state-run energy giant said on Tuesday. Attacks in May and June on oil tankers near the Strait of Hormuz, the entrance to the Gulf, has raised concerns about the safety of ships using the strategic shipping route. 

Jun 26 - PG&E bondholders propose bankruptcy exit plan worth up to $30 bln
A committee of bondholders of PG&E Corp's utility unit on Tuesday proposed a bankruptcy reorganization plan that would inject up to $30 billion to help the California power provider emerge from Chapter 11 and pay off its liability from wildfires. In a filing with the U.S. bankruptcy court in San Francisco, the committee, made up of senior unsecured noteholders of Pacific Gas & Electric Co, also sought to terminate the utility's exclusive period for filing a Chapter 11 reorganization plan so the committee may file its own plan. 

Jun 26 - Asia's thermal coal trade faces threats, with LNG the silent assassin: Russell
Everywhere Asia's coal industry looks it sees headwinds, from the current slump in prices induced largely by oversupply, to the lack of financing available for new projects, to the risk of restrictive regulations and the rise of cleaner energies. But perhaps the biggest risk in most of Asia, home to the world's top four importers and two biggest exporters, is from liquefied natural gas (LNG), the super-chilled fuel that is expanding rapidly versus a largely moribund coal sector.

Jun 26 - Asia's coal developers feeling left out by cold shoulder from banks
Developers of coal mines and coal-fired power plants in Asia are facing difficulties growing their businesses as global financial institutions refuse to back their projects to avoid criticism over climate change, industry participants said on Tuesday. That is intensifying pressure on an industry struggling to build new markets amid competition from alternative power generation sources, delegates to the Coaltrans conference in Indonesia said.

Jun 24 - Unit at Philadelphia refinery completely destroyed in fire - sources
The alkylation unit involved in a massive fire on Friday at Philadelphia Energy Solutions Inc's oil refinery has been completely destroyed, which will hamper the supply of gasoline from the U.S. East Coast's largest refinery, sources familiar with the matter said on Sunday. The destruction of the unit, coupled with damage from the fire that ripped through the 335,000 barrel-per-day (bpd) refining complex, could force the 200,000 bpd Girard Point section of the two-section complex to remain shut for an extended period. 

Jun 24 - Lower for longer: Supply glut in focus as Asia's biggest coal meet begins
Slowing economic growth in China is weighing on demand expectations for thermal coal in the world's biggest market for the fuel, while global moves towards cleaner energy are compounding problems arising from a glut in supply. This supply-demand tandem is likely to keep prices for coal used in power plants and the manufacture of cement under pressure in coming months and perhaps longer, industry sources said as Asia's biggest coal conference got underway.

Jun 24 - Exxon's $53 bln Iraq deal hit by contract snags, Iran tensions - sources
Just weeks ago, U.S. energy giant ExxonMobil looked poised to move ahead with a $53 billion project to boost Iraq's oil output at its southern fields, a milestone in the company's ambitions to expand in the country. But now a combination of contractual wrangling and security concerns, heightened by escalating tensions between Iraq's bigger neighbour Iran and the United States, has conspired to hold back a deal, according to Iraqi government officials.

Jun 24 - Hedge funds boost bullish bets on U.S. crude - CFTC
Hedge funds and money managers raised bullish wagers on U.S. crude in the week to June 18, the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) said on Friday, as tensions in the Middle East flared, threatening supply disruptions. The speculator group raised its combined U.S. crude futures and options position in New York and London by 12,454 contracts to 159,141 during the period, the data showed.

Jun 24 - Oil in floating storage hit near two-year high in May - Vortexa data
Crude and condensate in long-term floating storage hit its highest since August 2017 in May at 24 million barrels, as U.S. sanctions against Venezuela and Iran hindered the ability of the OPEC members to export, data from analytics firm Vortexa showed. Floating storage rose 15 million barrels in May compared with average levels of May 2018, and levels this month have already reached 26 million barrels, the data showed on Friday.

Jun 24 - Pemex plans debt refinancing, greater output as path to healthier balance sheet
Mexican state oil company Pemex plans to refinance $2.5 billion in debt this year while trying to revive oil output to boost income, the firm's chief financial officer said, as pressure mounts from ratings agencies over the company's performance. Alberto Velazquez, the CFO, said in an interview that the $2.5 billion mostly includes outstanding bonds. 

Jun 24 - Trump talks to Saudi crown prince on Iran, oil
U.S. President Donald Trump spoke on Friday to Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman about Middle East stability and the oil market, the White House said, after tensions with Iran prompted a rise in oil prices. "The two leaders discussed Saudi Arabia’s critical role in ensuring stability in the Middle East and in the global oil market. 

Jun 24 - U.S. drillers add oil rigs for first week in three -Baker Hughes
U.S. energy firms increased the number of oil rigs operating for the first time in the past three weeks as U.S. crude futures soared around 10% this week. Big energy price declines over the prior couple of months, however, prompted one analyst to cut rig count forecasts for 2019 and 2020.

Jun 24 - S.Korean firm wins mining leases for long-delayed Australian coal project 
An Australian state on Friday granted mining leases for a coal mine controlled by Korea Resources Corp (KORES), clearing the way for a project that green groups and some local communities have battled for more than a decade. The final approval from the New South Wales (NSW) state government follows a surprise victory for the pro-coal conservative government in an Australian election in which climate change had been a key issue.

Jun 21 - Exxon's $53 bln Iraq deal hit by contract snags, Iran tensions - sources
Just weeks ago, U.S. energy giant ExxonMobil looked poised to move ahead with a $53 billion project to boost Iraq's oil output at its southern fields, a milestone in the company's ambitions to expand in the country. But now a combination of contractual wrangling and security concerns, heightened by escalating tensions between Iraq's bigger neighbour Iran and the United States, has conspired to hold back a deal, according to Iraqi government officials.

Jun 21 - Probes and squeezed profits change the oil trading game
For the world's biggest oil traders, it feels like a return to the 1980s when earnings were diluted by an abundance of crude. After three decades of stellar expansion and booming revenues, profit margins at Vitol, Glencore, Trafigura, Gunvor, Mercuria and other merchants have been squeezed by a market again awash with crude and amid stiff competition from national oil firms.

Jun 21 - Gulf oil producers to maintain output within OPEC target in July - sources
Gulf OPEC producers will keep their July oil production within their OPEC target despite the current global supply cut pact expiring at end of June, OPEC sources said on Thursday, a signal that the Gulf exporters are reluctant to boost supply. Saudi Arabia, the top global oil exporter's crude output in June will be around the same level of its May production, and its July output will remain within its obligation under the OPEC-led supply cut deal, the sources said.

Jun 21 - Trump orders review of controversial biofuel waiver program - sources
U.S. President Donald Trump has directed members of his Cabinet to review the administration’s expanded use of waivers exempting small refineries from the nation’s biofuel policy, after hearing from farmers angry about the issue during his recent Midwest tour, according to three sources familiar with the matter. Trump's move underscores the rising political importance of the U.S. Renewable Fuel Standard, a more than decade-old law which requires refineries to blend corn-based ethanol into their gasoline to help farmers, but which also provides waivers to small refining facilities that can prove compliance would cause them financial harm.

Jun 21 - OPEC's market share is in long-term decline: Kemp
The Organisation of the Petroleum Exporting Countries' share of the global oil market is progressively eroding as it attempts to keep prices artificially high by restricting its own production. OPEC's share of global production fell to just 41.5% last year, the lowest since 2003, according to figures contained in the latest edition of the BP Statistical Review of World Energy, published on June 11.

Jun 21 - Chevron Phillips Chemical in bid to acquire Nova Chemicals - sources
Chevron Phillips Chemical Company, a joint venture between Chevron Corp and Phillips 66, has offered to acquire Nova Chemicals Corp for more than $15 billion including debt, people familiar with the matter said on Thursday. Chevron Phillips Chemical, one of the world's top petrochemical producers, would gain scale and expand its footprint through the acquisition of Nova Chemicals, whose expandable polystyrene and resins are used in a range of industries, from construction to packaging.

Jun 21 - Mexico's Pemex to stick to areas it knows best, pass on deepwater - CFO
Petroleos Mexicanos will focus on shallow water projects and onshore plays, and avoid investing in its deepwater riches for now, as the ailing Mexican state-run oil company seeks to turn around a 14-year slide in crude production, a top official said on Thursday. Chief Financial Officer Alberto Velazquez outlined the approach the state-owned oil company known as Pemex will take at a conference in the colonial city of Leon on Thursday.

Jun 20 - Staff evacuated as rocket strikes near foreign oil firms in Iraq
A rocket hit a site in southern Iraq used by foreign oil companies on Wednesday, including U.S. energy giant ExxonMobil, wounding three people and threatening to further escalate U.S.-Iran tensions in the region. There was no immediate claim of responsibility for the attack near Iraq's southern city of Basra, the fourth time in a week that rockets have struck near U.S. installations. 

Jun 20 - U.S. refiner Phillips 66 enters offshore oil export race
U.S. oil refiner Phillips 66 is proposing a deepwater crude export terminal off the U.S. Gulf Coast, the company said on Wednesday, challenging at least eight other projects aiming to send U.S. shale oil to world markets. The project, called Bluewater Texas Terminal LLC, signals another major expansion of its logistics operations. 

Jun 20 - OPEC wrangle over meeting date exposes deepening Saudi-Iran rift
OPEC's month-long wrangle over a date for its next meeting has highlighted a changing dynamic in the group with decisions increasingly driven by long-time leader Saudi Arabia in tandem with non-OPEC Russia, angering member states like Iran. Decision-making has never been easy in the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries, which groups 14 Arab and non-Arab oil producers, some of which have longstanding rivalries.

Jun 20 - Australian resource companies are becoming renewable energy believers: Russell
It's not quite yet a flood but Australian resource companies are increasingly embracing renewable energies into their mining and natural gas operations even in the face of a federal government that veers toward climate scepticism. Among recent developments are moves by Rio Tinto to convert its iron ore trains to hybrid power, the commissioning of a solar power plant at an oil and gas facility operated by Santos in South Australia state, and battery storage being integrated into ConocoPhillips' liquefied natural gas (LNG) plant in Darwin.

Jun 20 - Trump administration replaces Obama-era power plant rule, in boost to coal
The Trump administration finalized a new carbon emissions rule for U.S. power plants on Wednesday that it said could cut pollution without damaging the coal industry, replacing a much tougher Obama-era version to fight climate change. The move was a boost to coal companies facing tough competition from natural gas, solar and wind energy suppliers, but infuriated environmentalists and Democratic lawmakers who said the regulation was too weak to significantly reduce emissions and would put public health at risk.

Jun 20 - U.S. oil stockpiles fall across the board, crude more than expected - EIA
U.S. oil stockpiles fell across the board last week, with crude inventories dropping more than expected and refined products posting surprise drawdowns due to a rise in refining and crude exports, and drop in crude production, the Energy Information Administration said on Wednesday. Crude inventories fell 3.1 million barrels in the week to June 14, nearly thrice analysts' expectations for a decrease of 1.1 million barrels, and dropping from their highest levels since July 2017.

Jun 20 - U.S. Gulf gasoline glut sparks rare tanker voyage to Australia
A gasoline cargo is set to make a rare voyage to Australia from the U.S. Gulf Coast as swelling stockpiles have suppressed regional prices, opening up this unusual arbitrage opportunity, sources familiar with the matter said this week. Gulf Coast gasoline prices have hit their lowest seasonally since 2016 as inventories hover above the five-year average, according to U.S. Energy Information Administration data.

Jun 20 - Global economic slowdown hits oil consumption: Kemp
Global oil consumption rose last year at the slowest rate since 2014, as higher prices and broad deceleration in manufacturing activity and freight movements took their toll on fuel use and petrochemicals. Consumption is likely to rise even more slowly in 2019, given the further weakening of most manufacturing and freight indicators since the start of the year.

Jun 20 - Momentum builds for EU leaders to agree carbon neutral 2050 pledge at summit
A push by Germany, France and other EU nations for the bloc to go carbon neutral by mid-century looks likely to be endorsed by EU leaders on Thursday, despite resistance from eastern European nations worried it could cost jobs. A majority of the European Union's 28 members have signed up to the lofty target ahead of the two-day summit of EU leaders - hoping to lead by example at this year's U.N. climate talks in September abandoned by U.S. President Donald Trump. 

Jun 19 - Canada approves contentious oil pipeline expansion, expects legal challenges
Canada on Tuesday approved as expected a hotly contested proposal to expand the western Canadian crude oil pipeline it bought last year, providing hope for a depressed energy industry but angering environmental groups. Construction on the expansion of the Trans Mountain pipeline is scheduled to resume this year, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau told a news conference. 

Jun 19 - Anadarko approves $20 bln LNG export project in Mozambique
U.S. energy firm Anadarko Petroleum Corp on Tuesday gave the go-ahead for the construction of a $20 billion gas liquefaction and export terminal in Mozambique, the largest single LNG project approved in Africa. The announcement, which occurred at an event in Mozambique, was widely expected after Anadarko last month flagged the decision date. 

Jun 19 - Tanker attacks seen as calibrated but risky Iranian response to U.S. sanctions
If, despite its firm denials, Iran was behind attacks on two oil tankers in the Gulf last week and a further four last month, they represent a calibrated yet risky pushback against a U.S. sanctions squeeze, regional experts say. The targeting of six vessels on a major artery for world oil supplies was a vivid reminder of the stakes involved in the standoff pitting Iran against the United States and its regional allies.

Jun 19 - OPEC still struggling with meeting dates, proposes July 1-2 -sources
OPEC has again proposed to move dates of its next meeting, now suggesting July 1-2, two sources familiar with the matter said, as Saudi Arabia, Iran and non-OPEC Russia are struggling to agree a compromise. Previous proposals included dates for a meeting of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries followed by a meeting with non-OPEC allies on June 25-26 and July 11-12.

Jun 19 - South Korea fires up on renewables, to close more coal plants
As renewable energy powers up in South Korea, coal-fired generation, long the bedrock of the country's electricity supply, is being tapped to give up room. Facing choking smog in its major cities and under pressure to meet emission reduction targets, the world's fourth-biggest coal importer is expected to accelerate targets for green energy in an updated 15-year energy plan later this year.

Jun 19 - From gas in Russia to China-bound plastics, Austria's OMV shifts focus for growth
After years of largely banking on low-cost Russia for growth, OMV is shifting attention towards the Middle East as its chemist chief executive chases his vision of making the Austrian oil and gas group a major supplier of plastics. OMV boss Rainer Seele has spent more than 4 billion euros ($4.5 billion) - 40% of the group's M&A budget until 2025 - for oil and gas concessions in the region, a 15% stake in Abu Dhabi National Oil Co's (ADNOC) refining business and a to-be-formed trading joint venture with ADNOC and Italy's Eni.

Jun 18 - Iran, Russia talks end without deal on OPEC+ meeting date
Iran's oil minister met his Russian counterpart in Iran on Monday, industry sources said, raising hopes of progress in resolving an impasse over when OPEC and its allies will hold their next policy gathering. The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries and partners including Russia, an alliance known as OPEC+, have been considering since last month moving the date of their policy meeting in Vienna to July 3-4 from June 25-26.

Jun 18 - U.S. shale oil output to rise to record 8.52 mln bpd in July - EIA
U.S. oil output from seven major shale formations is expected to rise by about 70,000 barrels per day (bpd) in July to a record 8.52 million bpd, the U.S. Energy Information Administration said in its monthly drilling productivity report on Monday. The largest change is forecast in the Permian Basin of Texas and New Mexico, where output is expected to climb by 55,000 bpd to a fresh peak at 4.23 million bpd in July.

Jun 18 - Saudi Energy Minister calls for collective effort to secure shipping lanes
Saudi Arabian Energy Minister Khalid al-Falih said on Monday that countries need to cooperate on keeping shipping lanes open for oil and other energy supplies after last week's tanker attacks in the Middle East to ensure stable supplies. While he did not outline any concrete steps after the attacks that damaged two tankers on June 13, Falih said the kingdom would do everything necessary to ensure safe passage of energy from Saudi Arabia and its allies in the region.

Jun 18 - Hedge funds sell more oil, but balance of risks is shifting - Kemp
Hedge fund managers sold yet more oil last week as a weaker outlook for the global economy and expectations of a hit to consumption more than offset concerns about sanctions on Iran and Venezuela and other production problems. Hedge funds and other money managers were net sellers of another 96 million barrels of petroleum-related futures and options contracts in the week to June 11, exchange and regulatory data shows.

Jun 18 - Enterprise Products explores sale of Texas oil terminal stake - document
U.S. pipeline operator Enterprise Products Partners LP is looking to sell its 50% stake in a recently-completed South Texas crude export terminal, according to a marketing document viewed by Reuters. Enterprise is weighing an exit from the joint venture with terminal operator Plains All American Pipeline LP after proposing to build its own offshore port near Houston. 

Jun 18 - BofA cuts crude price outlook for second half of 2019 on faltering demand
Bank of America Merrill Lynch lowered its oil price forecasts for the second half of this year and into next year as an escalating trade war dampening the global economic outlook also translates into lower demand for oil. Brent prices  the global benchmark for oil, are now projected at $63 per barrel for the second half of 2019, down from the previous forecast of $68 a barrel.

Jun 17 - Saudi seeks oil supply protection as U.S and Iran face off
Saudi Arabia called for swift action to secure Gulf energy supplies and joined the United States in blaming Iran for attacks on two oil tankers in a vital shipping route that have raised fears of broader confrontation in the region. Thursday's tanker attacks in the Gulf of Oman exacerbated the antagonistic fallout from similar blasts in May that crippled four vessels. 

Jun 17 - Saudi Energy Minister hopes OPEC agrees to extend production cut "early July"
Saudi Energy Minister Khalid al-Falih said on Sunday that OPEC would probably meet in the first week in July in Vienna and that he hoped it would reach consensus on extending its agreement to cut oil output. Falih said earlier this month that OPEC was close to agreeing to extend the agreement beyond June, although more talks were still needed with non-OPEC countries that were part of the production deal. 

Jun 17 - Canada set to approve hotly-debated pipeline expansion, Trudeau unlikely to benefit
Canada looks set to approve a hotly-debated plan to expand an oil pipeline this week, people familiar with the process told Reuters, but the move is unlikely to help Prime Minister Justin Trudeau rebuild flagging support ahead of an October election. The Liberal government last year took the unprecedented step of buying the Trans Mountain pipeline from Kinder Morgan Canada for C$4.5 billion ($3.4 billion) to ensure the expansion went ahead to help solve crude transportation bottlenecks.

Jun 17 - Myths and reality: Adani's Australian coal mine torches rationality: Russell
Adani Enterprises' Carmichael coal mine in Australia is assuming mythical status way out of proportion to its actual significance, even before meaningful construction starts on the controversial project. For its opponents, the mine should never be built because it is not supported by a majority of Australians and aims to send coal to India, a country that says it doesn't want or need imports of the fuel.

Jun 17 - U.S. allows Iraq to import Iranian energy for three more months
The United States has allowed Iraq to import Iranian gas for its power grid for another three months by extending a waiver to sanctions - but insists that Baghdad seek alternative sources. Iraq has had several extensions to the waiver first granted last year after Washington reimposed sanctions on Tehran's oil sector forbidding countries from purchasing Iranian energy.

Jun 17 - IEA cuts 2019 estimate for oil demand growth on global trade worries
The outlook for oil demand growth in 2019 has dimmed due to worsening prospects for world trade, the International Energy Agency (IEA) said on Friday, although stimulus packages and developing countries should boost growth going into 2020. The Paris-based IEA, which coordinates the energy policies of industrial nations, revised down its 2019 demand growth estimate by 100,000 barrels to 1.2 million barrels per day (bpd), but said it would climb to 1.4 million bpd for 2020.

Jun 17 - Trump mulled plan in 2018 to scale back U.S. biofuel waivers - documents
President Donald Trump's advisers presented him with a plan last year to curtail the administration's use of small refinery waivers under the nation's biofuel law - a key demand of the powerful U.S. corn lobby, according to documents made public by the Environmental Protection Agency. While the June 2018 plan was ultimately rejected, the fact it reached the president's desk shows that Trump's advisers believed at the time he had the ability to adjust the controversial waiver program, even as his EPA defended the expanded use of the exemptions by citing legal requirement.

Jun 14 - U.S. blames Iran for tanker attacks in Gulf of Oman, Iran rejects assertion 
The United States blamed Iran for attacks on two oil tankers in the Gulf of Oman on Thursday that drove up oil prices and raised concerns about a new U.S.-Iranian confrontation, but Tehran bluntly denied the allegation. It was not immediately clear what befell the Norwegian-owned Front Altair or the Japanese-owned Kokuka Courageous, which both experienced explosions, forcing crews to abandon ship and leave the vessels adrift in waters between Gulf Arab states and Iran.

Jun 14 - OPEC, Russia nearing accord on long term oil supply coordination - Nikkei 
OPEC and other producers including Russia are in final talks for an agreement, that may be signed in early July, to cooperate on oil supplies on a long-term basis, Japan's Nikkei reported, citing Russian energy minister Alexander Novak. Novak also told the Nikkei that discussions with OPEC on moving the date of the meeting to early July from the originally-planned dates of June 25-26 were nearly finalised.

Jun 14 - Business and pleasure: how Russian oil giant Rosneft uses its corporate jets 
Jets used for corporate travel by Russian state-owned oil major Rosneft flew at least 13 times to Mallorca, Ibiza, Sardinia and the Maldives when CEO Igor Sechin or people from his social circle were in the same vacation spots. Using publicly available data, Reuters tracked 290 Rosneft flights between January, 2015 and May, 2019. Of those round trips, 96 took place during Russian public holidays or between Friday lunchtime in Moscow and Monday morning.

Jun 14 - OPEC cuts oil demand outlook, building case to keep supply curbs 
OPEC has cut its forecast for growth in global oil demand due to trade disputes and pointed to the risk of a further reduction, building a case for prolonged supply restraint in the rest of 2019. The producer group and its allies meet in the coming weeks to decide whether to maintain supply curbs. Some members are worried about a steep slide in prices, despite demands from U.S. President Donald Trump for action to lower the cost of oil.

Jun 14 - As Iran nuclear deal flounders, France turns to Saudi for oil 
Over the past year, France has led a European push to keep trade with Iran alive after the United States tore up the nuclear deal with Tehran and re-imposed sanctions. But over the same period, data shows France has cut purchases of Iranian oil and sharply increased imports from Iran's arch-enemy Saudi Arabia. In recent weeks, France has used its energy needs to justify a surge in arms sales to the kingdom, even if there is no evidence the 50 percent increase in Saudi purchases of French arms last year was conditional on France buying Saudi oil.

Jun 14 - Norway wealth fund must ditch ConocoPhillips after index review 
Norway's wealth fund will have to divest its holdings in ConocoPhillips and Hess after both U.S. oil companies were added to a list which effectively excludes them from the Nordic country's portfolio. As part of Norway's efforts to shift its $1 trillion "rainy day" fund away from oil, the country's parliament on Wednesday adopted a plan to drop all dedicated oil and gas explorers and producers, as defined by stock market indices provider FTSE Russell, from the fund's benchmark index. 

Jun 14 - Having a gas: Australia dominates China's LNG supply 
Australia's fast-expanding liquefied natural gas industry has this year been supplying the lion's share of China's growing demand for imports of the commodity, with appetite surging as Beijing shifts away from dirtier fuels such as coal. Australia supplied over 53% of China's LNG imports during the first five months of 2019, shipping data in Refinitiv showed, up from around 40% in 2016 when a previous round of new Australian export projects started to ramp up.

Jun 13 - Algeria floats idea of larger OPEC+ oil cut, rollover still likely - sources 
Algeria has floated an idea of increasing an oil supply cut by OPEC and its allies in the second half of 2019 as demand falters, OPEC sources said, although rolling over current output curbs is still the most likely scenario. Oil has tumbled from a 2019 peak above $75 a barrel in April to $61 a barrel now on concerns about weakening demand due to a U.S.-China trade dispute and an economic slowdown, raising alarm among some oil exporters.

Jun 13 - Trump considering sanctions over Russia's Nord Stream 2 natgas pipeline 
President Donald Trump said on Wednesday he was considering sanctions over Russia's Nord Stream 2 natural gas pipeline project -- which the United States has told European companies to avoid -- and warned Germany against being dependent on Russia for the fuel. "We're protecting Germany from Russia and Russia is getting billions and billions of dollars from Germany," Trump told reporters at an appearance with Polish President Andrzej Duda at the White House.

Jun 13 - Oil demand growth grinding to lowest in years as global economy stalls 
World oil markets have undergone a U-turn, switching from supply-side risks like OPEC's production cuts or U.S. sanctions against producers Iran and Venezuela, analysts said, to concerns of slowing consumption amid fears of a global recession. As a result, crude oil prices have turned a 45% price rally in the first four months of the year into a slump of more than 15% since late April.  

Jun 13 - U.S. crude stockpiles rise unexpectedly for second week - EIA 
U.S. crude oil stockpiles rose unexpectedly for a second straight week, despite the highest refining rates in six months and lower imports and production, the Energy Information Administration said on Wednesday. Gasoline inventories increased last week in line with forecasts, while distillates posted an unexpected drawdown, the statistical arm of the EIA said.

Jun 13 - Glencore puts Chad oilfields up for sale - sources 
Mining and trading giant Glencore has put its oilfields in Chad up for sale, three sources familiar with the matter said, in a retreat from its foray into oil production following asset writedowns over the past decade. Like its oil trading peers, Glencore expanded in the upstream sector around a decade ago in order to secure oil flows, but the value of the assets tumbled with the oil price slump in late 2014.

Jun 13 - India's Adani wins green light for long delayed Australian coal mine 
India's Adani Enterprises on Thursday received the go-ahead to start construction of a controversial coal mine in outback Australia, after a state government approved a final permit on ground water management. The Carmichael mine has been a lighting rod for climate change concerns in Australia, and was seen as a factor in the surprise return to power of the conservative Liberal/National coalition in a national election in May. 

Jun 13 - Canada gov't rejects effort to ease review of major energy and transport projects 
Canada's Liberal government is pressing ahead with a bill that would impose more stringent reviews on major projects like pipelines and interprovincial highways, to the dismay of the nation's main crude-producing province and the energy industry. The government late on Tuesday rejected most of the amendments proposed by Conservative senators to dilute the bill, saying the changes ignored environmental concerns.

Jun 12 - Iran scrambles to lift petrochemical sales as sanctions hammer oil 
Iran has been racing to step up exports of petrochemicals and tap new markets to compensate for sliding oil sales, Iranian and international industry sources said, but now risks losing that crucial revenue as Washington tightens the screw on sanctions. Tehran has been selling increased volumes of petrochemical products at below market rates, in countries including Brazil, China and India, since the United States reimposed sanctions on Iranian oil exports in November, according to the six sources who include two senior Iranian government officials.

Jun 12 - OPEC nears deal to keep production curbs in place - UAE energy minister 
Members of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries are close to reaching an agreement on extending production cuts, the energy minister of the United Arab Emirates said on Tuesday. Speaking at the International Economic Forum of the Americas, Energy Minister Suhail bin Mohammed al-Mazroui said that given existing oil inventories the output curbs should remain in place or be extended "at least until the end of the year."

Jun 12 - BP raises Saudi oil reserves 12% in first big change in 30 years 
BP has raised estimates for Saudi Arabia's crude oil reserves by 12%, marking the first major change to the country's estimated reserves since 1989. In its benchmark 2019 Statistical Review of World Energy, BP recalibrated some Saudi gas reserves as oil, allowing Riyadh to close in on Venezuela's top spot as the world's largest reserves holder.

Jun 12 - U.S. oil output to rise less in 2019 than previously expected - EIA 
U.S. crude oil production will rise 1.36 million barrels per day to 12.32 million bpd in 2019, 140,000 bpd less than previously forecast, according to a monthly Energy Department report on Tuesday. In 2020, U.S. crude production is expected to rise 94,000 bpd, 1,000 bpd more than previously forecast, the report from the EIA, the statistical arm of the Energy Department, said.

Jun 12 - Coal price slump in Asia even as demand grows shows supply is the issue: Russell 
Whenever coal prices decline it's tempting for those opposed to the polluting fuel to think that demand is falling amid a move to cleaner renewable energies, but in the current cycle it appears oversupply is the main culprit. Coal prices in Asia, especially the benchmark thermal grade at Australia's Newcastle Port, have come under pressure in recent weeks, even as coal exports have actually been rising.

Jun 12 - Trafigura profit leaps as oil and gas trading offsets losses at associates 
Trading house Trafigura's six-month net profit jumped by 92% after strong performance from its oil and gas desks helped to offset weakness at the metals division and losses at key associates. The company attributed the profit leap to favourable market conditions, strong U.S. oil exports and its own oil desk's restructuring.

Jun 12 - Hedge funds sell oil as economic fears intensify: Kemp 
Hedge fund managers are liquidating bullish oil positions at the fastest rate since the fourth quarter of 2018 amid increasing fears about the health of the global economy. Hedge funds and other money managers were net sellers of 104 million barrels of futures and options linked to the six most important petroleum contracts in the week to June 4.

Jun 11 - Russia says still a risk of excessive oil output, sharp price fall 
There is a still a risk that oil producers pump out too much crude and prices fall sharply, Russia's energy minister said on Monday, suggesting Moscow might support an extension of output cuts at a meeting of leading oil producing countries next month. The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries and some non-members including Russia, known collectively as OPEC+, have curbed supplies since January to prop up prices.

Jun 11 - China's oil import slump is more than just the loss of Iranian crude: Russell 
China's imports of crude oil stumbled in May, and while the loss of Iranian cargoes offers a convenient explanation, there are other reasons to be cautious over the strength of demand in the world's biggest oil importer. China brought in 9.47 million barrels per day (bpd) in May, a drop of 11% from April's record 10.64 million bpd, according to calculations based on customs figures released on Monday. 

Jun 11 - Compensation for tainted Russian oil to be decided company by company - official 
Compensation for the tainted Russian oil supplied to Europe earlier this year via the Druzhba pipeline and in cargoes will be decided company by company, Russia's Deputy Energy Minister Pavel Sorokin told Reuters. Russia halted some oil supplies in April after excessive levels of organic chloride were found in the million barrel-per-day Druzhba pipeline that crosses Belarus and serves customers as far west as Germany.

Jun 11 - New marine fuel rules to boost diesel prices for at least a year - analysts 
Global prices for diesel and marine fuels should rise by October ahead of a January switchover to new, very low-sulfur marine fuels, and remain higher for at least a year as refiners shift production to make more of the new fuels, analysts said. Marine fuels containing no more than 0.5% sulfur by weight, down from the 3.5% currently used, to power ocean-going vessels will be required for ships without exhaust scrubbers on Jan. 1, under the International Maritime Organization (IMO) 2020 standard.

Jun 11 - U.S. senators target $1 bln a year coal subsidy, ask IRS for test results 
Three U.S. senators on Monday urged the Internal Revenue Service to crack down on a $1 billion-a-year subsidy for burning chemically treated refined coal, after a new study showed some power plants using the fuel produced surging amounts of mercury and smog instead of cutting pollution. Scrutiny from Rhode Island's Sheldon Whitehouse, as well as fellow U.S. Senate Democrats Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts and Sherrod Brown of Ohio, comes after a Reuters special report in December revealed that many power plants burning refined coal pumped out more smog, not less.  

Jun 11 - U.S. refiner group sues Trump EPA over high-ethanol gasoline 
The main U.S. refining industry association said on Monday it sued to block the Trump administration's effort to expand sales of higher ethanol blends of gasoline, arguing the move exceeded the administration's authority. The legal challenge from the American Fuel and Petrochemical Manufacturers (AFPM) association escalated a battle between the oil and corn industries over the nation's biofuel policy, which requires refiners to blend biofuels like corn-based ethanol into their gasoline, often at great expense.

Jun 10 - China May crude oil imports drop after April record 
China's crude oil imports slipped 8% in May from an all-time peak hit the month before, customs data showed, as the world's top importer of the commodity curbed shipments from Iran amid tightening U.S. sanctions on that country. China's crude imports dropped to 40.23 million tonnes in May from 43.73 million tonnes in April, General Administration of Customs data showed on Monday.

Jun 10 - Iran has no plans to leave OPEC despite tensions - oil minister 
Iran has no plans to leave the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries despite being treated like an enemy by some fellow members, Oil Minister Bijan Zanganeh said in an interview published on Saturday. “Iran has no plans to leave OPEC...and regrets that some members of OPEC have turned this organization into a political forum for confronting two founding members of OPEC, meaning Iran and Venezuela,” Zanganeh told the Iranian parliament news site ICANA.

Jun 10 - Canadian oil pipeline congestion sets up lucrative storage play 
Upheavals in the Canadian crude market are providing unique opportunities for firms with sizeable long-term leases on Alberta storage tanks, a cluster that sources say includes Mercuria Energy Group and oil major BP Plc's trading arm. Canada holds the world's third-largest crude reserves, but years of delay in building new pipelines has led to oil production outpacing takeaway capacity. A glut of crude has thus been created, increasing demand for storage tanks in the oil sands province of Alberta, which this year introduced production cuts to deal with the oversupply.

Jun 10 - Poland confirms partial resumption of clean oil supply from Russia 
Polish pipeline operator PERN confirmed that clean oil supplies from Russia had been partially restored on Sunday after Russia's oil export flows to Europe were disrupted in April because of contamination. Belarus state energy company Belneftekhim earlier said that it had partially resumed oil transit towards Poland and that its daily Western-bound transit plan for June was 65,000 tonnes. 

Jun 10 - Aging Enbridge oil pipelines face setbacks over fears of Great Lakes spills 
Fears about oil spills into the Great Lakes from two aging U.S. pipelines have flared, raising doubts about their future and creating fresh headaches for operator Enbridge Inc and the Canadian energy sector. Canada has faced years of delay in getting new oil pipelines built because of environmental opposition, resulting in severe congestion in Alberta, the country's main crude-producing province, that forced the provincial government to impose production cuts this year. Pipelines face increasing scrutiny from environmental groups worried about leaks, and U.S. Great Lakes states are taking a hard look at the risks.

Jun 10 - Greenpeace activists halt BP's North Sea oil rig 
Greenpeace activists said on Sunday they halted the progress of an oil rig destined for BP Plc's North Sea exploration programme off the coast of Scotland. The activists demanded that one of the world's biggest energy companies immediately end drilling new wells and invest only in renewable energy or shut its operations and return cash to investors.

Jun 10 - Challenges slow Mexico's billion-dollar oil hedge this year - sources 
The world's biggest and most secretive financial oil trade is facing unusual roadblocks this year. Mexico typically buys as much as $1 billion worth of financial positions to protect its revenues from oil sales for the coming year against price fluctuation. It is the most widely anticipated hedging deal in oil markets, and can make or break an investment bank's dealbook.

Jun 10 - Hedge funds cut bullish crude bets in week - CFTC 
Hedge funds and other money managers cut their net long U.S. crude positions as prices plunged, the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) said on Friday. The speculator group cut its combined futures and options position in New York and London by 13,196 contracts to 198,884 during the week to June 4.

Jun 07 - Putin says Russia disagrees with OPEC on fair oil price 
President Vladimir Putin said on Thursday Russia had differences with OPEC over what constituted a fair price for oil, but that Moscow would take a joint decision on output with OPEC colleagues at a policy meeting in the coming weeks. Putin's comments have set a stage for tough talks between Russia and its partners over their policy on the global oil market, which are expected to take place within a month.

Jun 07 - Russia's Sechin accuses U.S. of using energy as political weapon 
Igor Sechin, CEO of Russian oil giant Rosneft, accused the United States of using energy as a political weapon and said on Thursday that the U.S. golden age of energy had become an "era of energy colonialism" for other countries. Speaking at an economic forum in St Petersburg, Sechin said a third of global oil reserves were restricted by U.S. sanctions on Iran and Venezuela and that Washington was losing moral ground as a self-styled leader of open markets.

Jun 07 - As Permian oil production turns lighter, price outlook darkens 
The United States may now be the world's biggest crude producer, but the oil being produced in its prolific Permian basin is increasingly too light in density for domestic refiners or for exports, eroding prices for these orphan barrels. Over the past year, production from the Permian in West Texas and New Mexico has changed, with more super-light oil being extracted, as producers focus drilling in the western part of the basin. 

Jun 07 - Fitch downgrades Pemex debt to 'junk' in fresh blow to Mexico 
Fitch on Thursday became the first major ratings agency to downgrade the debt of Mexican oil company Pemex to "junk" status, in a major setback for President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador's plans to revive the struggling state-run firm. Fitch changed Pemex's credit rating from investment grade to speculative grade, or "junk", with a negative outlook, a day after it downgraded Mexico's sovereign debt, a decision criticized by the Mexican finance ministry.

Jun 07 - U.S. tightens Venezuela oil sanctions, indicates more actions to come 
The U.S. Treasury Department on Thursday tightened its pressure on Venezuela's state-owned oil company by making clear that exports of diluents by international shippers could be subject to U.S. sanctions. The change, announced on the Treasury Department's website, is the latest U.S. measure aimed at pressuring Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro by limiting access to oil export revenue from PDVSA.

Jun 07 - UAE says 'sophisticated' tanker attacks likely the work of a state actor 
The United Arab Emirates told United Nations Security Council members on Thursday that attacks on four tankers off its coast on May 12 bore the hallmarks of a "sophisticated and coordinated operation," most likely by a state actor. In a document on the briefing to Security Council members, the UAE, joined by Norway and Saudi Arabia, did not say who it believed was behind the attacks and did not mention Iran, which has been accused by the United States of being directly responsible.

Jun 07 - Petrobras, Brazil government dodge bullet as Supreme Court approves asset sales 
Brazil's Supreme Court ruled on Thursday that state-run firms do not need congressional approval to sell their subsidiaries, a major victory for the government of President Jair Bolsonaro and state-run oil firm Petrobras. Also on Thursday, Supreme Court Justice Edson Fachin, who ruled in May to suspend the $8.6 billion sale of Petrobras' TAG pipeline unit to France's Engie SA, reversed his decision in light of the full court's ruling, allowing Petroleo Brasileiro SA, as the firm is formally known, to go ahead with the divestment.

Jun 06 - U.S. refiners warn Trump: Mexico tariffs could result in higher fuel prices 
U.S. refiners warned the Trump administration that tariffs on imports from Mexico could deliver a punishing blow to refiners and raise the cost of gasoline just as the U.S. driving season kicks into high gear, according to sources familiar with the discussions. Trump surprised Mexico last week with a threat to impose 5% tariffs on all its exports to the United States unless the Mexican government took measures to stem the flow of illegal immigrants into the United States.

Jun 06 - U.S. crude stocks surge unexpectedly as oil builds across the board - EIA 
U.S. crude stockpiles posted another unexpected build last week, sending oil prices 4% lower, while gasoline and distillate inventories grew more than forecast, the Energy Information Administration said on Wednesday. Crude inventories rose 6.8 million barrels in the week to May 31, compared with analyst expectations for a decrease of 849,000 barrels, mainly due to a jump in imports, record high production and sluggish refining rates for summer.

Jun 06 - Shunned by China, U.S. crude exports surge to the rest of Asia: Russell  
U.S. crude producers may have lost the fast-growing China market because of President Donald Trump's trade dispute, but they have more than compensated by making inroads into the rest of top oil-consuming region Asia. While crude is currently excluded from the tariffs Beijing has imposed on U.S. goods, Chinese refiners have steered clear of U.S. oil, with only two cargoes totalling 3.87 million barrels arriving in the first five months of 2019, according to vessel-tracking and port data compiled by Refinitiv.

Jun 06 - Oil output at Kazakhstan's Kashagan hits record of 400,000 bpd - sources 
Oil output at Kazakhstan's Kashagan field reached an all-time high of 400,000 barrels per day (bpd) on Tuesday, three sources familiar with daily production data told Reuters. Oil production on Kashagan might rise further to 410,000 bpd in coming months, two industry sources familiar with the development plan said.

Jun 06 - Global climate goal measures an 'enormous challenge', says Equinor
Oil demand needs to halve, gas use must drop by 10% and coal use nees to be all but eradicated by 2050 to achieve the goals of the Paris agreement to limit global warming, oil company Equinor said in its energy outlook on Thursday. Equinor's so-called Renewable energy scenario consistent with the Paris pact's goal of limiting warming to less than 2 degrees Celsius requires cumulative CO2 emissions at a little more than 770 gigatonnes (Gt) between 2017 and 2050.

Jun 05 - Iran sets scene for tough OPEC meeting, opposes date change 
Iran has told OPEC that it opposes delaying the oil producer group's next meeting, setting the scene for another fight with fellow members as U.S. sanctions put Tehran under unprecedented economic pressure with its oil exports down to just a trickle. OPEC gatherings are often fraught due to acrimony between Iran and its arch-rival Saudi Arabia, the group's de facto leader and top global oil exporter.

Jun 05 - Russia's oil output falls to 3-year low due to contamination crisis 
Russia's average daily oil output has dropped to a three year-low after contaminated crude clogged its main export route. Average oil output was 10.87 million barrels per day (bpd) on June 1-3, down from an average of 11.11 million bpd in May, two sources familiar with official data said on Tuesday.

Jun 05 - Norsk Hydro Q1 core profit plunges after cyber attack 
Aluminium-maker Norsk Hydro, the victim of a cyber attack in March that paralysed its IT systems, posted an 82% drop in first-quarter core profits on Wednesday and said global market uncertainty could impact its markets. The Norwegian company's underlying operating result fell to 559 million Norwegian crowns ($64.3 million) from 3.15 billion crowns a year ago, while analysts in a Reuters poll on average had expected a profit of 123 million crowns.

Jun 05 - Lower oil prices start to rebalance the market: Kemp  
Lower oil prices are starting to rebalance the oil market by slowing the rise in U.S. crude output and encouraging Saudi Arabia and its allies to extend production cuts through the end of 2019. U.S. crude production rose 241,000 barrels per day (bpd) to 11.905 million bpd in March from February, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration (“Petroleum Supply Monthly”, EIA, May 2019).

Jun 05 - Commodity firms push to meet new Papua New Guinea PM as he sets out agenda 
Commodity companies are pushing to meet Papua New Guinea's new prime minister, who is set to deliver a nationwide address on Wednesday as he starts to overhaul the way the gas-rich country manages its vast natural resources. James Marape's speech is due to be broadcast around 6 p.m. local time (0800 GMT), just as thousands around the rugby league-loving nation gather at their televisions ahead of the State of Origin match, a big derby in Australia. 

Jun 05 - Venezuela's oil exports drop 17% in May as sanctions kick in - data 
Venezuelan PDVSA's oil exports took another hit in May, following a deadline for customers to wind-down purchases in order to comply with U.S. sanctions, according to documents from the state-run company and Refinitiv Eikon data. The energy firm's exports of crude and refined products fell 17% in May from the previous month to 874,500 barrels per day (bpd), mainly due to difficulty in selling off barrels of upgraded crude that used to be bought by U.S. refiners.

Jun 05 - Biden unveils $1.7 trillion climate plan to end U.S. carbon emissions by 2050 
Joe Biden, the front-runner for the Democratic 2020 presidential nomination, released a climate change plan on Tuesday that would pour $1.7 trillion of investment into achieving 100% clean energy and net-zero emissions by 2050, in part using revenues from reversing Trump administration corporate tax cuts. The former vice president unveiled the plan after weeks of pressure from rivals and green activists who said he was not taking global warming seriously enough and would rely too heavily on Obama-era ideas.

Jun 04 - Saudi's Falih says OPEC+ consensus emerging on output deal in second half 
Saudi Energy Minister Khalid al-Falih said consensus was emerging among the OPEC+ group of oil producers to continue working towards oil market stability in the second half of the year, the Saudi-owned Arab News newspaper reported on Monday. Oil prices in May sustained their worst monthly fall in six months on worries that trade disputes would hit demand for crude.

Jun 04 - Oil, gas and coal markets pummelled by economic slowdown
Energy markets are being battered by spreading concerns that an economic slowdown will hit consumption of oil, natural gas and coal. Oil, the world's most used fuel, has seen prices fall by 20% from their 2019 peak in late April, with Brent crude oil futures threatening to fall below $60 per barrel for the first time since January. 

Jun 04 - U.S. court rejects environmental assessment for Enbridge pipeline in blow to Canadian oil sector
A Minnesota court ruled on Monday that Enbridge Inc's environmental impact statement for the replacement of its Line 3 oil pipeline is inadequate, raising the possibility of further delays. The Line 3 project would double current capacity to 760,000 barrels per day of Canadian crude from Alberta to Wisconsin, providing much-needed relief from congestion on existing Canadian pipelines.

Jun 04 - Glencore's head of oil, Alex Beard, retires amid U.S. probes 
Glencore's head of oil, Alex Beard, who helped make the firm one of the world's top three oil trading houses, will retire this month, the company said on Monday in yet another management shake-up amid U.S. probes into its activities. Glencore, founded by trader Marc Rich, has come under U.S. scrutiny in the past year over its business in the Democratic Republic of Congo, where it produces cobalt and copper, and in Venezuela and Nigeria, where it trades oil and refined products.

Jun 04 - Compensation for Russian dirty oil to be decided by buyers and sellers 
Compensation for the contamination of Russian oil in the Druzhba pipeline should be agreed between the buyers and sellers of this oil, Russia's Deputy Energy Minister Pavel Sorokin told reporters on Monday. Russian officials and oil suppliers met European buyers in Moscow on Monday to discuss the incident, in which several million tonnes of oil were found contaminated with high levels of organic chloride. That has disrupted deliveries to Belarus, Germany, Poland, Ukraine and other countries since April.

Jun 03 - Iran warns any clash in the Gulf would push oil prices above $100 
U.S. military vessels in the Gulf are within range of Iranian missiles, a top military aide to Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei said on Sunday, warning any clash between the two countries would push oil prices above $100 a barrel. Iran and the United States have been drawn into starker confrontation in the past month, a year after Washington pulled out of a deal between Iran and global powers to curb Tehran’s nuclear programme in return for lifting international sanctions.

Jun 03 - Saudi Arabia raises July crude oil prices to Asia 
Saudi Aramco has raised its July price for its Arab Light grade for Asian customers by $0.60 a barrel versus June to a premium of $2.70 per barrel to the Oman/Dubai average, the state oil company said on Sunday. It cut its July Arab Light OSP for Northwest Europe, setting it at a discount of $1.10 a barrel to ICE Brent, down $1.10 a barrel from June.

Jun 03 - Russia's May oil output hits 11-month low on dirty oil crisis 
Russian oil output fell to 11.11 million barrels per day (bpd) in May, its lowest level since June 2018, from 11.23 million bpd in April, Energy Ministry data showed on Sunday. The production fall resulted mainly from the closure due to oil contamination of Russia's Druzhba pipeline, which usually ships 1 million bpd, or 1 percent of global oil demand.

Jun 03 - U.S. crude output rises 2.1% in March to near record high - EIA
U.S. crude oil production rose 241,000 barrels per day (bpd), or 2.1%, in March to 11.905 million bpd, just below its record high, the Energy Information Administration (EIA) said on Friday. The monthly increase in U.S. oil production from a revised 11.664 million bpd in February followed two months of declines in January and February, the statistical arm of the Department of Energy said in its monthly 914 production report.

Jun 03 - Oil loses lustre as banks cash in on cleaner commodities 
Investment banks are beefing up trading teams in markets such as gas, metals and carbon permits that are flourishing as businesses and economies become greener, according to recruitment consultants. The shift in staffing at the world's biggest investment banks comes at the expense of oil, which has fallen out of favour after being the most profitable and best-staffed commodities business for years.

Jun 03 - Trump's Mexican tariffs could hit U.S. refiners, add to fuel costs 
U.S. President Donald Trump's threats to tax Mexican imports could disrupt a long-standing cross-border energy trade, hitting U.S. consumers and refiners that use Mexican oil by boosting prices, and raising concerns about potential retaliation by the world's biggest buyer of U.S. energy products. Mexico sends 600,000 to 700,000 barrels of oil to the United States every day, mostly to refiners that process that crude into gasoline, diesel and other products.

Jun 03 - U.S. drillers cut oil rigs for sixth straight month - Baker Hughes 
U.S. energy firms this week increased the number of oil rigs operating for the first time in four weeks but cut the rig count for the sixth straight month as most drillers cut spending plans. Companies added three oil rigs in the week to May 31, bringing the total count to 800, General Electric Co's Baker Hughes energy services firm said in its closely followed report on Friday.  

Jun 03 - Hedge funds cut bullish crude oil bets last week - CFTC
Hedge funds and other money managers cut their net long U.S. crude futures and options positions in the week to May 28, the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) said on Friday. The speculator group cut its combined futures and options position in New York and London by 38,030 contracts to 212,080 during the period.

Jun 03 - Trump lifts curbs on E15 gasoline to help farmers, angering Big Oil 
The Trump administration on Friday lifted restrictions on the sale of higher ethanol blends of gasoline, keeping a campaign promise to farmers suffering from the trade war with China but drawing a legal threat from the oil industry. The announcement will allow gasoline stations to sell blends containing up to 15 percent corn-based ethanol, called E15, year-round, ending a summertime ban that President Barack Obama's Environmental Protection Agency imposed in 2011 to reduce smog pollution.

May 31 - Trump's sanctions hit OPEC oil output despite Saudi boost - survey 
Top oil exporter Saudi Arabia has raised production in May, a Reuters survey found, but not by enough to compensate for lower Iranian exports which collapsed after the United States tightened the screw on Tehran. The 14-member Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries pumped 30.17 million barrels per day (bpd) in May, the survey showed, down 60,000 bpd from April and the lowest OPEC total since 2015, the Reuters survey showed.

May 31 - Burning tyres: the murky oil business polluting parts of Asia 
When local investigators scoured a riverbed in southern Malaysia for clues in a chemical dumping case that hospitalised over one thousand people earlier this year, they found a cocktail of toxins, including a colourless liquid commonly secreted when tyres are recycled. That led environment officials and police to a small firm called P Tech Resources involved in pyrolysis - a business of burning old tyres to make low-grade oil that industry sources say is also common elsewhere in Southeast Asia, China and India.

May 31 - U.S. says countries buying Iranian oil will be subject to sanctions
The United States will sanction any country which buys oil from Iran after the expiration of waivers on May 2, U.S. Special Representative for Iran Brian Hook said on Thursday. Sanctions would be imposed "even if a country had not met its previously-negotiated purchase caps," Hook said in a statement. "Our firm policy is to completely zero out purchases of Iranian oil. Period."

May 31 - Loss of Iranian crude, China product exports hurt Asian refiners: Russell 
As the first month of theoretically no Iranian crude oil exports comes to a close it seems that Asian refiners have been able to cope with the loss of supplies, but it has come at the expense of their profits. The United States didn't renew the waivers granted to eight importers of Iranian crude, which expired at the beginning of May, and the administration of President Donald Trump has been clear in saying it intends to stop all shipments from Iran.

May 31 - U.S. vows first oil lease sale in Alaska Arctic refuge this year 
The U.S. Interior Department is determined to sell oil leases for the first time this year in the ecologically sensitive but presumably petroleum-rich coastal plain of Alaska's Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, a Trump administration official said on Thursday. “That lease sale will happen in 2019,” Joe Balash, the assistant interior secretary for lands and minerals management, told an oil industry conference in Anchorage.

May 31 - Russia disputes volume of tainted oil in Europe - newspaper 
Contaminated Russian oil volumes sent to Europe are much smaller than claimed by Belarus and Poland, Russia's pipeline monopoly said on Thursday, in the latest twist in the country's worst oil export crisis. Some 3 million tonnes of oil was contaminated with organic chloride, not the 5 million estimated by Belarus which transits Russian oil to Poland, Sergei Andronov, vice-president of pipeline firm Transneft, told the Kommersant newspaper.

May 31 - U.S. crude stockpiles fall less than expected, gasoline builds sharply - EIA
U.S. crude oil stockpiles fell less than expected last week, while gasoline stocks posted a hefty surprise build ahead of the Memorial Day long weekend as refiners boosted their rates to the highest in five months, the Energy Information Administration said on Thursday. Crude inventories fell 282,000 barrels in the week to May 24, compared with analysts' expectations for an decrease of 857,000 barrels and the industry group the American Petroleum Institute report of a 5.3 million-barrel draw.

May 30 - Saudi Arabia expected to hike crude prices to Asia in July for 3rd mth - sources 
Top oil exporter Saudi Arabia is expected to raise prices for all crude grades it sells to Asia in July for a third straight month after Middle East crude benchmarks jumped, trade sources said on Thursday. The producer is likely to increase the official selling price (OSP) for flagship Arab Light crude by up to $1 a barrel to the highest since January 2014, a Reuters survey of four sources at refineries showed.

May 30 - Exxon shareholders reject resolutions on climate and separating CEO-chairman 
Exxon Mobil Corp shareholders on Wednesday rejected a proposal to split the chief executive officer and board chairman roles that some had promoted to protest a decision to strike an unrelated climate change resolution from the ballot. Two institutional shareholders had urged a vote in favor of the role split after Exxon got the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission to strike a climate change measure from its ballot.

May 30 - Azerbaijan sees OPEC+ meeting in July, would agree to extension 
Azerbaijan would agree to a possible extension of the global output reduction pact between the Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) and other oil exporters, Azeri Energy Minister Parviz Shahbazov told Reuters on Thursday. Shahbazov said he expected the group to convene in the beginning of July in Vienna to discuss further actions.

May 30 - Transneft on the defensive as Russia says won't fund oil clean-up 
More than a month into the biggest crisis to hit Russia's Druzhba ("Friendship") pipeline, operator Transneft and the government are at odds over who should pay to clean up the contamination that halted flows. Buyers are keen to know who will resolve the impasse, which has seen five million tonnes of oil contaminated with high levels of organic chloride disrupt deliveries to Belarus, Germany, Poland, Ukraine and a number of central European countries.

May 30 - Global economic slowdown hits diesel consumption: Kemp 
Global manufacturing and trade volumes have been decelerating since the third quarter of 2018 and the slowdown is starting to show up in sluggish consumption of middle distillates such as gasoil and diesel. Global manufacturers have reported falling export orders for eight months since September, according to the new export orders component of the JP Morgan global purchasing managers’ index.

May 30 - Oil producer Canadian Natural doubles down on Canada in $2.8 bln deal with Devon 
Oil and gas producer Canadian Natural Resources Ltd said on Wednesday it would buy the Canadian assets of U.S.-based Devon Energy Corp for C$3.8 billion ($2.81 billion) in cash, investing further in Canada's struggling energy sector as some rivals divest. Shares of Canadian Natural rose the most in nearly two months as investors who have been otherwise skeptical of Canada's oil sector saw a good fit.

May 29 - Russia to consider extension of oil output cut deal with OPEC - deputy PM
Russia will consider a possible extension of its oil output reduction agreement with the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) and other producers, Russian First Deputy Prime Minister Anton Siluanov told Reuters on Wednesday. "There are many economic issues and strategic issues (related to this)," Siluanov said on the sidelines of a conference in Kazakhstan. "We will look into this."

May 29 - Midwest flooding disrupts U.S. crude, fuel cash markets 
Unexpected pipeline outages and refinery shutdowns over the past week - in part caused by bad weather in the U.S. Midwest - has roiled cash markets for both crude oil and refined products, traders said on Tuesday. Volatile trading was seen both in crude markets in the Cushing, Oklahoma hub and for gasoline and diesel traded in the Tulsa, Oklahoma region.

May 29 - Washington warns Hong Kong to watch for vessel carrying Iranian oil 
The United States has warned Hong Kong to be on alert for a vessel carrying Iranian petroleum that may seek to stop in the Asia financial hub, and said that any entity providing services to the vessel will be violating U.S. sanctions. The news comes nearly a month after U.S. President Donald Trump’s administration stepped up moves to choke off Iran’s oil exports by scrapping waivers it had granted to big buyers of Iranian crude oil, including China.

May 29 - In bold anti-graft push, Mexico sets sights on ex-president's confidant
Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador made his boldest move yet to root out entrenched corruption by going after one of his predecessor's closest aides, a former chief of state oil firm Pemex, for alleged bribery, tax fraud and other crimes. The target, Emilio Lozoya, headed Pemex from 2012 to 2016 and ran former president Enrique Pena Nieto's election campaign.

May 29 - Occidental to sell parts of Anadarko after debt-fueled acquisition 
Occidental Petroleum snatched up some of the richest shale oilfields in Texas when it beat out rival Chevron Corp in a bidding war to acquire Anadarko Petroleum. It also quadrupled its debt - to $40 billion - at a time when investors are calling for spending cuts and higher dividends.

May 29 - Hedge funds bang defensive drum on oil: Kemp
Hedge funds liquidated more of their bullish petroleum positions as concerns about the health of the global economy and oil usage outweighed European and Middle Eastern supply disruptions. But selling in the most recent week was notably lighter than in the three previous, suggesting at least some managers think prices have pulled back enough for the time being.

May 28 - "It's time to tell our story" - Australia's LNG industry finally fights: Russell
It's taken a while but Australia's liquefied natural gas (LNG) industry is putting on the gloves and stepping into the ring against the activists who want to condemn it and all fossil fuels to history's dustbin. The central theme of virtually every speech on the opening day of the annual Australian Petroleum Production and Exploration Association (APPEA) conference was that the industry has to fight its corner and not allow environmentalists all the space in the fight for the hearts and minds of the populace.

May 28 - Russia's oil production continues to fall after Druzhba contamination - sources
Russia's oil production continued to fall this month, two industry sources told Reuters on Monday, under pressure from lower exports after shipments via the Druzhba pipeline to Europe were found to be contaminated in April. Five million tonnes of oil were contaminated last month with organic chloride and some of the dirty crude is still stuck in pipelines in Belarus and eastern Europe.

May 28 - Kuwait oil minister sees balanced oil market towards end 2019
The oil market is expected to be in balance towards the end of 2019, as global inventories fall and demand remains strong, but OPEC's job is not done yet, Kuwait's oil minister told Reuters. There are still uncertainties around oil demand growth due to concerns about the impact of the U.S./China trade dispute on global economy, while U.S. shale oil production is still rising, Khaled al-Fadhel said on Monday.

May 28 - IEA rings alarm bell on phasing out nuclear energy 
A steep decline in nuclear energy capacity will threaten climate goals and power supply security unless advanced economies find a way to extend the lifespan of their reactors, the International Energy Agency said. Nuclear is currently the world's second-largest source of low-carbon electricity, behind hydropower, and accounting for 10 percent of global electricity generation. But nuclear fleets in the United States and Europe are on average more than 35 years old and many of the world's 452 reactors are set to close as cheap gas and tighter safety requirements make it uneconomical to operate them.

May 28 - Algeria to seek "good compromise" over Total's Anadarko deal - minister
Algeria's energy minister said on Monday he would seek a "good compromise" when asked about his earlier comments that Algiers would block a plan by France's Total to buy Anadarko's Algerian assets. Occidental Petroleum agreed to sell Anadarko Petroleum Corporation's assets in Algeria, Ghana, Mozambique and South Africa to Total for $8.8 billion if the U.S. oil company succeeds in completing its plan to take over of Anadarko.

May 27 - SK Innovation replaces Iranian condensate with crudes from Russia, elsewhere 
SK Innovation, owner of South Korea's top refiner SK Energy and petrochemical maker SK Incheon Petrochem, has been replacing Iranian condensate with crude oil from other countries including Qatar and Russia, a top official said on Monday. "The share of Iranian condensate was high, but that has been replaced with crude oil from Russia, Kazakhstan and Qatar and we also have been diversifying our crude sources," Choi Nam-kyu, chief executive of SK Incheon Petrochem, told a news conference.

May 27 - China's crude oil imports from Saudi Arabia up 43% y/y in April
China's crude oil imports from Saudi Arabia rose 43% last month, making the Middle Eastern OPEC kingpin once again the top supplier to the world's second-biggest economy, boosted by demand from new private refiners. Saudi imports grew to 6.30 million tonnes, or 1.53 million barrels per day (bpd) on a daily basis, compared with 1.07 million bpd in the year ago period, according to data from the General Administration of Customs released on Saturday.

May 27 - Asian renewable investment to overtake upstream oil and gas spending in 2020 - Rystad 
Renewable energy investment in the Asia-Pacific region will overtake spending on oil and gas exploration by 2020, consultancy Rystad Energy said on Monday. Total capital expenditure in renewables will rise above $30 billion in the region by 2020, just overtaking investment into exploration and production for oil and natural gas, the consultancy said.

May 27 - Russia to pump dirty oil back from Belarus - sources 
Russia will pump dirty crude oil back from Belarus as it tries to clear a major pipeline of the contaminated oil that has caused the worst ever disruption to its oil exports, sources and officials said on Friday. Some 5 million tonnes of oil were contaminated in April with organic chloride and the dirty crude is now stuck in pipelines in Belarus and further West - in Poland, Germany, Ukraine, Slovakia, Hungary and the Czech Republic.

May 27 - Hedge funds cut bullish bets on U.S. crude last week - CFTC 
Hedge funds and other money managers cut their bullish positions on U.S. crude futures and options in the week to May 21, the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) said on Friday. The speculator group cut its combined futures and options position in New York and London by 12,529 contracts to 250,108 during the period. The move was the fourth consecutive decline in bullish positions.

May 27 - Total seeks to reduce stake in giant Kashagan oilfield - sources 
France's Total is seeking to sell part of its stake in Kazakhstan's giant Kashagan oilfield to raise up to $4 billion, four banking sources said. Total holds a 16.8% stake in Kashagan, one of the world's largest oilfields with production of about 400,000 barrels per day (bpd), and is seeking to sell around a third of its stake, according to the sources.

May 27 - U.S. oil drillers cut rigs for third week in a row - Baker Hughes 
U.S. energy firms this week reduced the number of oil rigs operating for a third week in a row as weaker oil prices encourage drillers to follow through on plans to cut spending. Drillers cut five oil rigs in the week to May 24, bringing the total count down to 797, the lowest since March 2018, General Electric Co's Baker Hughes energy services firm said in its closely followed report on Friday. 

May 27 - Britons set for $7.6 bln energy windfall from network curbs
Britons could see a 6 billion pound ($7.6 billion) cut in energy bills over five years from 2021, saving the average household 40 pounds per year, under plans to curb what gas and electricity network firms can pay shareholders. Regulator Ofgem, which introduced a price cap on standard energy bills in January after lawmakers said customers were being overcharged, is now targeting the operators whose network fees make up around a quarter of British household energy bills.

May 24 - Russia removed 2 mln t of tainted Druzhba oil using rail, sea, storage - sources 
Russia is using rail, storage tanks and ships to remove contaminated oil from an export pipeline, and has so far extracted around 2 million tonnes of the tainted oil - or over a third of volumes hit, industry sources and data showed. A month ago, Russia had to stop exports via the Druzhba pipeline to Poland and Germany at the northern branch of the line and to Ukraine, Hungary, Slovakia and the Czech Republic in the south. Routes split at the Mozyr refinery in Belarus.

May 24 - U.S. tells foreign firms to stop jet fuel trading with Venezuela -sources 
The United States told some large foreign firms this week they should stop trading jet fuel with Venezuela or face sanctions, according to two industry sources, ratcheting up pressure intended at removing Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro from power. U.S. State Department officials made calls into several large Swiss-and British-based trading houses aimed at limiting commercial and military flights in Venezuela, said the sources.

May 24 - Iran stores more oil on land and at sea as exports slump 
Iran's oil storage on land and at sea is on the rise as U.S. sanctions on exports bite and Tehran battles to keep its ageing fields operational and crude flowing, according to data and industry sources. Washington announced in May the end of sanctions waivers for foreign countries importing Iranian oil, hitting Tehran's biggest source of income.

May 24 - Australian state says Adani coal approvals due by mid June 
Australia's Queensland state said on Friday that the process to obtain final approvals for Adani Enterprise's controversial Carmichael coal mine must be wrapped up by mid-June. Adani has been working for a decade to obtain approvals to develop the project in the remote Galilee Basin, but the process has been slow as the mine has become a touchstone for concerns about climate change.

May 24 - Shipowners see increase in IMO-compliant fuels, but doubts persist 
Shipowners, who are facing one of the biggest changes in the oil industry in decades, are seeing more fuels that will be compliant with new rules on sulphur emissions from ships, but some say the way forward is far from clear. The United Nations shipping agency the International Maritime Organization (IMO) will from January 2020 limit the sulphur content in fuel ships use to 0.5%.

May 24 - Asia oil refiners mull run cuts with margins at 16-year low for season - sources, data
Asia's oil refiners are considering reducing output after margins slumped to their lowest for the season since 2003, according to industry sources and Refinitiv data. Companies that planned to trim output include SK Energy, a unit of SK Innovation, the Singapore Refinery Company (SRC), owned by PetroChina and Chevron Corp and at least one refiner in Thailand, five people familiar with the matter said.

May 23 - Guaido says Washington should help Venezuela keep U.S. refiner Citgo 
The United States should help Venezuela keep control over U.S. refiner Citgo by preventing its seizure by creditors seeking to collect on unpaid Venezuelan debts, opposition leader Juan Guaido said in an interview with Reuters on Wednesday. Venezuela's opposition is pushing to remove President Nicolas Maduro amid a catastrophic economic collapse that has created a humanitarian crisis. It also wants to protect overseas assets that it says will be crucial for a future economic recovery after Maduro leaves office.

May 23 - U.S. crude stocks highest since July 2017 on weak refining demand - EIA 
U.S. crude oil inventories rose unexpectedly last week, hitting their highest levels since July 2017, due to weak refinery output, particularly in the Midwest, the Energy Information Administration said on Wednesday. Crude inventories rose 4.7 million barrels in the week ended May 17, compared with analysts' expectations for a decrease of 599,000 barrels. That boosted overall crude inventories, not including the U.S. government's Strategic Petroleum Reserve, to 476.8 million barrels, their highest since July 2017.

May 23 - Groningen gas output should be cut more quickly, says minister 
Production at the Groningen gas field in the Netherlands should be reduced at a faster pace following a 3.4 magnitude earthquake in the northern Dutch region on Wednesday, Economic Affairs Minister Eric Wiebes said. Wiebes made the comment to journalists in The Hague ahead of a debate on production at the field that will consider government plans to end output by 2030.

May 23 - U.S. lawmaker wants EPA's use of biofuel waivers investigated 
Democratic Senator Tammy Duckworth on Wednesday asked the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's Office of Inspector General to investigate why the agency vastly expanded its use of waivers to exempt small refineries from the nation's biofuel law. The request, made in a letter from Duckworth's office to Acting Inspector Charles Sheehan, follows a May 16 Reuters report that the EPA decided to expand the waiver program months before a 2017 court decision it has often cited to justify the move to the corn lobby.

May 23 - Saudi Aramco inks 20-year deal with Sempra for LNG supply
Saudi Aramco signed a 20-year agreement to buy liquefied natural gas (LNG) from a forthcoming export terminal in Texas that U.S.-based Sempra Energy is developing, the two companies said on Wednesday. The Saudi state oil giant plans to become a major global gas player, and this deal will provide it with access to some of the world's cheapest and most abundant natural gas via the U.S. shale boom.

May 22 - Russian pipeline restart hit by dirty oil evacuation problems
Hopes for a speedy resumption of oil exports from Russia to Poland and Germany along the Druzhba pipeline route are fading after plans to remove dirty oil from the pipeline had a major setback last week, three trading sources said. Russia halted oil flows along the pipeline to Eastern Europe and Germany in April because of contaminated crude, leaving refiners in Europe scrambling to find supplies.

May 22 - Norsk Hydro to boost alumina output as Brazil lifts restrictions 
Albras aluminium smelter in Brazil, partly owned by Norsk Hydro, started to ramp up its output on Tuesday after a Brazilian federal court lifted production restrictions at the Alunnorte alumina plant, the Norwegian company said. The Alunorte plant, an important supplier to the aluminium industry, has been forced to operate at half capacity since a spill in February 2018 which prompted regulators and courts to restrict output.

May 22 - Magnitude 3.4 quake hits gas field region of north Netherlands 
A 3.4 magnitude earthquake hit the north Dutch region of Groningen, home to one of Europe's largest natural gas fields, early on Wednesday, Dutch meteorology institute KNMI said. Decades of gas extraction have led to dozens of minor tremors every year in Groningen, damaging thousands of homes, sparking unrest among locals and prompting authorities to impose caps on activity.

May 22 - Saudi Arabia waits for higher spot prices before raising oil exports: Kemp 
Saudi Arabia is in no rush to increase oil production and exports, fearing that additional supply would risk a renewed build up of stockpiles and push prices lower. “Our preference is to maintain production management to keep inventories on their way declining gradually, softly, but certainly towards normal levels”, the kingdom’s oil minister said on Monday.

May 22 - BP faces climate protests at investor meeting, Shell gets boost 
Activists disrupted BP's annual shareholder meeting on Tuesday shouting "this is a crime scene" in the latest climate protest against the oil and gas group, while rival Royal Dutch Shell got some rare praise from investors on its emissions policies. Both oil giants have been working with shareholders in recent years to try to define a path towards meeting the goals of the 2015 Paris climate agreement to limit global warming. U.S. rivals Exxon Mobil and Chevron are also under pressure from investors, but have so far not committed to any targets.

May 21 - Australia's shock election shows killing coal mining is no sure thing: Russell 
While Australia's opposition Labor Party is the obvious loser from the weekend election, the anti-coal environmental lobby suffered probably a bigger blow and will need to re-think its strategy to end mining of the polluting fuel. The conservative Liberal Party-led coalition is likely to have pulled off one of the great political escapes by returning to office for a third term, confounding polls and pundits who thought Labor was a near certainty to win the May 18 election.

May 21 - Oil traders try to ship dirty Russian crude to Asia 
Trading companies Vitol and Unipec are sending around 700,000 tonnes of contaminated Russian oil to Asia in an attempt to place the barrels rejected by buyers in Europe, according to trading sources and ship tracking data. A key Russian pipeline to Europe, Druzhba, and a major port Ust-Luga have been contaminated with organic chloride, which can damage refining equipment. As a result, Russia was forced to reduce exports in the worst ever supply disruption.

May 21 - OPEC+ considers moving oil policy meeting to early July - sources 
OPEC and its allies are considering moving the date of their next oil policy meeting in Vienna to July 3-4 from June 25-26, two OPEC sources said on Monday. The date change has been proposed but has not been officially confirmed, the sources said.

May 21 - Funds sell oil as economic fears trump supply threats: Kemp 
Hedge funds continued to liquidate some of their bullish position in oil last week as concerns about the economy and the outlook for consumption outweighed escalating tensions and the threat to supplies in the Middle East. Hedge funds and other money managers cut their combined net long position in the six major petroleum futures and options contracts by 19 million barrels in the week to May 14.

May 21 - Carlyle in talks with pipeline firms to sell 25% stake in U.S. oil export project - source 
Carlyle Group LP is in discussions with three companies that operate pipelines and terminals to sell a 25% stake in its Corpus Christi, Texas, crude oil export terminal for $625 million, according to a source familiar with the matter. Carlyle is also in talks with the three companies to jointly operate a crude oil pipeline from Houston to Corpus Christi, the source said. The identities of the companies could not be immediately learned.

May 20 - Saudi Arabia says oil producers want to reduce inventories 
Saudi Energy Minister Khalid al-Falih said on Sunday there was consensus among OPEC and allied oil producers to drive down crude inventories "gently" but his country would remain responsive to the needs of what he called a fragile market. Falih said a possible rollover in the second half of 2019 of output curbs agreed by OPEC and non-members was the main option discussed at a ministerial panel meeting during the day but "things can change by June".

May 20 - In coal we trust: Australia's voters back PM Morrison's faith in fossil fuel 
Australia's re-elected Prime Minister Scott Morrison once brandished a lump of coal in parliament, crying, "This is coal - don't be afraid!" His surprise win in what some dubbed the 'climate election' may have stunned the country, but voters should know what comes next in energy policy - big coal. Battered by extended droughts, damaging floods, and more bushfires, Australian voters had been expected to hand a mandate to the Labor party to pursue its ambitious targets for renewable energy and carbon emissions cuts.

May 20 - Australia's shock election shows killing coal mining is no sure thing: Russell 
While Australia's opposition Labor Party is the obvious loser from the weekend election, the anti-coal environmental lobby suffered probably a bigger blow and will need to re-think its strategy to end mining of the polluting fuel. The conservative Liberal Party-led coalition is likely to have pulled off one of the great political escapes by returning to office for a third term, confounding polls and pundits who thought Labor was a near certainty to win the May 18 election.

May 20 - Iraq oil minister says deal with Exxon close, slowed by evacuation 
A major oil deal between Iraq and Exxon Mobil was "very close" but had been slowed by Exxon's decision on Saturday to evacuate its international staff from the West Qurna oil field, Iraq's Oil Minister Thamer Ghadhban said on Sunday. "Had we concluded we would have signed a heads of agreement," he said, referring to a preliminary document that would set out terms of cooperation on the South Integrated Project. "But now they are out of the country, why should I run after them?" he said at an oil meeting in Jeddah.

May 20 - Insurer says Iran's Guards likely to have organised tanker attacks 
Iran's elite Revolutionary Guards (IRGC) are "highly likely" to have facilitated attacks last Sunday on four tankers including two Saudi ships off Fujairah in the United Arab Emirates, according to a Norwegian insurers' report seen by Reuters. The UAE, Saudi Arabia and Norway are investigating the attacks, which also hit a UAE- and a Norwegian-flagged vessel.

May 20 - Kazakhstan to seek damages from Transneft for tainted oil loaded in Ust-Luga 
Kazakh oil flowing via Russia to be loaded on tankers at the Baltic Sea port of Ust-Luga has been contaminated and Kazakhstan plans to seek compensation from Russian pipeline monopoly Transneft, a senior Kazakh energy official said. Russia's oil export flows have been disrupted since April, when high levels of organic chloride were found in crude pumped via the Druzhba pipeline to Ust-Luga and other European countries.

May 20 - Global demand upturn, IMO rule could boost Brent oil to $90/bbl-BofA 
De-escalation of a trade war could result in a weaker dollar and stronger global growth, which along with International Maritime Organization (IMO) changes to shipping fuel rules could raise Brent oil to $90 a barrel, Bank of America Merrill Lynch said. "The new shipping fuel rules by IMO could result in the largest ever surge in middle distillate demand ... The net result will likely be a large bump up in oil demand from the global power generation sector."

May 20 - U.S. oil drillers cut rigs to lowest count since March 2018 - Baker Hughes 
U.S. energy firms this week reduced the number of oil rigs operating for the second week in a row, with the rig count at its lowest since March 2018, as some drillers follow through on plans to cut spending. Despite those cuts, production in the nation's biggest shale formations was expected to keep rising from record levels.

May 20 - Saudi to supply an extra 2 mln barrels/month to Indian Oil Corp from July
Saudi Aramco will supply state-run Indian Oil Corp Ltd (IOC) an extra 2 million barrels of crude a month from July to December, an IOC executive said on Friday, as New Delhi seeks to make up for a loss in supplies from Iran. Saudi Arabia approached Indian buyers last month offering them additional supplies to compensate for lost Iranian oil after U.S. sanctions kicked in.

May 17 - Why Zimbabwe faces worst power cuts in three years 
Zimbabwe is experiencing its worst power cuts in three years, lasting up to 10 hours daily in some areas and threatening mining output in one of the world's biggest platinum and gold producers. The sector, which generated most of Zimbabwe's $4.8 billion of export earnings last year, is crucial to President Emmerson Mnangagwa's pledge to revive an economy ravaged by drought and soaring inflation.

May 17 - Trump EPA did not await court ruling to loosen biofuel rules for refiners - documents 
The Trump administration made it easier for oil refineries to get waivers from the nation's biofuel law at least four months before a 2017 court decision it often cites to justify the move to the corn lobby, and the move was motivated by a desire to save the oil industry money, Reuters has learned. The timing and motivation for the Environmental Protection Agency's policy change, revealed through court documents and an interview with a former top agency official, have not been previously reported. 

May 17 - U.S. coasts face tight gasoline supplies ahead of summer driving season
Tight gasoline supplies on the U.S. East and West Coasts have left both regions vulnerable to potential price spikes at the pump ahead of the peak summer driving season. Supplies on both coasts are at seasonal five-year lows just days ahead of the May 27 Memorial Day holiday weekend starts, the unofficial beginning of summer.

May 17 - Russia's Transneft to compensate buyers for dirty oil, but they must prove loss 
Russia's state pipeline monopoly Transneft will compensate all parties for losses incurred from contaminated oil, but they must prove the damage, a government official said on Thursday, as the first European refinery declared force majeure. Russia's oil export flows have been disrupted since April when high levels of organic chloride were found in crude pumped via the Druzhba pipeline to the Baltic port of Ust-Luga and other European countries.

May 17 - Gas station lines reappear in Venezuela as refinery halts, fuel imports plunge 
Gas station lines reappeared across oil-rich but crisis-stricken Venezuela this week as gasoline imports plunged and the country's second-largest oil refinery halted operations. Shortages of motor fuel have become a periodic occurrence across OPEC member Venezuela, particularly in border regions where smuggling to neighboring countries is common, the result of generous subsidies from state-run oil company PDVSA that have led to nearly-free gasoline.
May 17 - Brent spreads point to tightest market since 2014: Kemp
Oil traders anticipate a big draw down in crude stocks in the second half of this year as sanctions on Iran and Venezuela coupled with other supply disruptions and a sluggish response from OPEC cause a severe shortage. Brent's six-month calendar spread has moved into a backwardation of almost $3.80 per barrel up from $2.20 a month ago and a contango of more than $1 per barrel at the beginning of the year.

May 17 - Norsk Hydro eyes Brazil progress as court lifts one of two embargoes 
A Brazilian federal court has lifted one of two production embargoes on a key plant owned by Norwegian metals maker Norsk Hydro, the company said on Thursday, raising hopes that full production can soon resume. Shares in the company rose 5.4% in early trade on the news, and were up 4.3% at 33.42 Norwegian crowns by 0745 GMT.

May 16 - UAE says it will show restraint after tanker attacks, Iran's behavior a concern 
The United Arab Emirates will show restraint after attacks on oil tankers off its coast and is committed to de-escalation during a "difficult situation" caused by Iranian behavior in the region, a senior official said on Wednesday. Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Anwar Gargash said he would not speculate about who was behind Sunday's sabotage acts on four vessels, including two Saudi tankers, near Fujairah emirate while an investigation was under way and due to be completed within days.

May 16 - Tanker unloads Iranian fuel oil at China port after near 5-month trek - data 
A tanker carrying Iranian fuel oil in violation of U.S. sanctions has unloaded the cargo into storage tanks near the Chinese city of Zhoushan, according to ship tracking data on Refinitiv Eikon. The discharging of the nearly 130,000 tonnes of Iranian fuel oil onboard the tanker, the Marshal Z, confirmed by a representative of the oil storage terminal, marks the end of an odyssey for the cargo that began four months ago.

May 16 - In limbo: the dirty Russian oil no one wants to pay for
The bills are due for millions of barrels of contaminated Russian oil that have been stuck for weeks in pipelines from Belarus to Germany - but no one wants to pay. Western oil companies and European refiners that bought the oil a month ago, before discovering it was unusable, have so far refrained from freezing payments as they are keen to maintain good long-term relations with the world's second biggest oil exporter and avoid protracted legal battles in Russian courts.

May 16 - U.S. crude stockpiles rise unexpectedly to highest since 2017 - EIA
U.S. crude oil stockpiles rose unexpectedly last week, climbing to their highest since 2017 amid a release from the national emergency reserve, while gasoline inventories decreased more than forecast, the Energy Information Administration said on Wednesday. Crude inventories rose by 5.4 million barrels in the last week, compared with analysts' expectations for a decrease of 800,000 barrels.

May 16 - Rising U.S. oil output helps fill gap left by Iran, Venezuela - IEA
The world will require very little extra oil from OPEC this year as booming U.S. output will offset falling exports from Iran and Venezuela, the International Energy Agency said on Wednesday. The IEA, which coordinates the energy policies of industrial nations, said Washington's decision to end sanctions waivers that had allowed some importers to continue to buying Iranian crude added to the "confusing supply outlook."

May 16 - Venezuela's crude upgraders scale back output as exports dwindle - sources 
Venezuela's crucial oil upgraders have stopped processing heavy crude because a decline in exports due to U.S. sanctions has left the OPEC nation without sufficient storage space, seven sources familiar with the facilities told Reuters. Three of the four upgraders, which convert extra-heavy Orinoco oil into lighter exportable grades, have started "recirculating" - a process that keeps systems running to prevent damage but does not yield new upgraded oil.

May 16 - Oil prices trapped by grim news from emerging markets: Kemp 
Consumption concerns have kept oil prices under pressure since the middle of April, even as threats to production and seaborne exports multiply. U.S. sanctions have slashed exports from Venezuela and Iran, Libya's production is threatened by renewed fighting, and tensions between Iran and the United States have ratcheted up.

May 15 - Saudi oil facilities attacked, U.S. sees threat in Iraq from Iran-backed forces
Saudi Arabia said armed drones struck two of its oil pumping stations on Tuesday, two days after the sabotage of oil tankers near the United Arab Emirates, and the U.S. military said it was braced for "possibly imminent threats to U.S. forces in Iraq" from Iran-backed forces. The attacks took place against a backdrop of U.S.-Iranian tension following Washington's decision this month to try to cut Iran's oil exports to zero and to beef up its military presence in the Gulf in response to what it said were Iranian threats.

May 15 - Russia's Transneft blames oil firms for contamination, no easy fix in sight
Russian pipeline monopoly Transneft said on Tuesday that oil producing firms were to blame for the recent contamination of an export pipeline, as sources said there was no quick fix to the problem. Russian export flows have been disrupted since April when high levels of organic chloride were found in crude pumped via the Druzhba pipeline to the Baltic port of Ust-Luga.

May 15 - OPEC sees more 2019 demand for its oil as it keeps cutting output 
OPEC said on Tuesday that world demand for its oil would be higher than expected this year as supply growth from rivals including U.S. shale producers slows, pointing to a tighter market if the exporter group refrains from raising output. But the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries, in a monthly report, said its output fell in April. Top exporter Saudi Arabia cut output despite oil prices hitting a 2019 high above $75 a barrel and U.S. President Donald Trump urging action to lower prices.

May 15 - Saudi Aramco bets on oil supply to Europe, trading expansion
Saudi Aramco aims to boost its oil supply to Europe by 300,000 barrels per day (bpd) within the next two years as it expands its trading operations there with an office opening this summer in London, a senior company executive said. Aramco, the world’s biggest oil producer, is expanding its downstream, or refining and marketing, footprint globally by signing new deals and boosting the capacity of its plants to secure new markets for its crude.

May 15 - Mexico's rising oil nationalism faces debt-rating crisis
Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador took office in December vowing to revive state-owned energy company Pemex and put the brakes on foreign investment to give the public a bigger cut of the country's oil wealth. The leftist oil nationalist's ambitions include building a new $8 billion refinery, refurbishing existing refineries and reversing a steady decline in crude production.

May 15 - Houston Ship Channel bottleneck eases after vessel collision - officials 
A bottleneck of traffic on the Houston Ship Channel eased on Tuesday though one-way travel restrictions remained following a weekend collision between a deep-draft ship and a barge, officials said on Tuesday. About 11,280 barrels of gasoline spilled into the channel near Bayport, Texas, officials said in an update on Tuesday, after a 755-foot (230-meter) tanker collided over the weekend with a Kirby Inland Marine tugboat towing two barges containing the fuel.

May 15 - Cash-rich Canadian oil firms favor buybacks as other options narrow 
Canadian oil producers are raking in the highest revenues in five years thanks to strong global oil prices and Alberta's production cuts, but government intervention has hamstrung their spending abilities, encouraging many to buy back shares and pay down debt. Canada's main crude-producing province effectively became a mini-OPEC this year after the Alberta government imposed production quotas to relieve pipeline congestion and drain a glut of crude in storage.

May 14 - U.S. faces hurdles in push to build electric vehicle supply chain
The United States faces stiff challenges as it moves to create its own electric vehicle supply chain, industry analysts say, with the extent of the country's metal reserves largely unknown and only a few facilities to process minerals and produce batteries. Legislation making its way through the U.S. Congress aims to help offset those gaps, but China remains the global EV sector leader, a dominance seen by some as difficult to supplant.

May 14 - Asia's refiners brace for surge in spot oil prices on tight supply 
Asian oil buyers are bracing for surging prices in the spot crude market as global supplies have tightened after stringent U.S. sanctions on producers, disruptions of Russian oil flows in Europe and maintenance at oilfields in the Atlantic Basin and Asia. Buyers have already paid a premium of $6 a barrel to benchmark Dubai quotes for Russia's Sokol crude for July loading, the highest premium since 2014. The premium for July-loading Oman crude futures to Dubai is at $3.46 a barrel, the most for this time of year in four years.

May 14 - Saudi oil tankers among those attacked off UAE amid Iran tensions 
Saudi Arabia said on Monday that two of its oil tankers were among those attacked off the coast of the United Arab Emirates and described it as an attempt to undermine the security of crude supplies amid tensions between the United States and Iran. The UAE said on Sunday that four commercial vessels were sabotaged near Fujairah emirate, one of the world's largest bunkering hubs lying just outside the Strait of Hormuz. It did not describe the nature of the attack or say who was behind it.

May 14 - Russian oil quality back to normal at Baltic port after contamination
Russia has begun shipping clean oil via the Baltic after a contamination problem disrupted flows for three weeks and it is working to resume supplies by a pipeline to Europe although traders said this might take several more weeks to fix. High levels of organic chloride, used in oil extraction but which must be removed before being sent to clients, was found in crude pumped to the Baltic port of Ust-Luga and through the Druzhba pipeline in late April, disrupting Russian exports.

May 14 - U.S. shale output to hit new record of 8.49 million bpd in June - EIA 
U.S. oil output from seven major shale formations is expected to rise by about 83,000 barrels per day (bpd) in June to a fresh peak of about 8.49 million bpd, the U.S. Energy Information Administration said in its monthly drilling productivity report on Monday. One of the largest changes is forecast in the Permian Basin of Texas and New Mexico, where output is expected to climb by 56,000 bpd to a new record of about 4.17 million bpd in June. That would be the biggest increase since February.

May 14 - Hedge funds cautious on oil as economic outlook darkens: Kemp
Hedge fund managers have started to turn more bearish on oil as concerns about a slowing global economy and an over-extended price rally outweigh fears about sanctions and supply disruptions. Hedge funds and other money managers were net sellers of 25 million barrels of futures and options in the six major contracts linked to petroleum prices in the week to May .

May 14 - U.S. liquefied natural gas shipments to China face mounting tariffs
China said on Monday it would raise tariffs on liquefied natural gas (LNG) imports from the United States amid a series of additional levies, a move that could further reduce U.S. LNG shipments to the world's fastest growing importer of the fuel. So far this year, only two LNG vessels have gone from the United States to China, versus 14 during the first four months of 2018 before the start of the 10-month trade war.

May 14 - Outages from Russia to North Sea give physical crude a boost 
Crude oil markets in Europe and West Africa are gaining support from unplanned Russian, Iranian and North Sea supply losses, and analysts say Brent futures have yet to fully reflect this. Nigeria's biggest crude grade, Qua Iboe, was being offered at a $2.50 a barrel premium to benchmark dated Brent, the highest since 2014. In the North Sea, Forties crude reached a six-week high on Friday.

May 14 - Houston port restrictions could continue all week -official
The Houston Ship Channel could remain under one-way travel restrictions all week following a collision between a deep-draft ship and a barge that spilled petrochemicals into the waterway, according to an official. About 9,000 barrels of gasoline spilled into the channel near Bayport, Texas, when a 755-foot (230-m) tanker collided with a Kirby Inland Marine tugboat towing two barges containing the fuel. One barge ruptured and the other capsized.

May 14 - Oil supply crunch to test OPEC's spare capacity 
Oil production capacity could fall to under one percent of global oil demand by the end of the year if OPEC compensates falling production from Iran and Venezuela, leaving oil prices exposed to sharp swings in the event of unplanned outages, analysts say. Spare capacity is the extra oil a producing country can bring onstream and sustain at short notice, providing global markets with a cushion in the event of natural disaster, conflict or any other cause of an unplanned supply outage.

May 13 - Saudi Arabia says two Saudi oil tankers attacked near UAE waters 
Saudi Arabia said on Monday that two Saudi oil tankers were among vessels targeted by a "sabotage attack" off the coast of the United Arab Emirates (UAE), condemning it as an attempt to undermine security of global crude supplies. The UAE said on Sunday that four commercial vessels were hit by sabotage near the emirate of Fujairah, one of the world's largest bunkering hubs lying just outside the Strait of Hormuz.

May 13 - Hedge funds cut bullish bets on U.S. crude to lowest in a month - CFTC 
Hedge funds cut their bullish wagers on U.S. crude oil to the lowest level in a month and upped their bets on Brent crude to the highest in nearly seven months, data showed on Friday, as oil prices whipsawed amid concerns over trade battle between the U.S. and China. The speculator group cut its combined futures and options position in U.S. crude futures in New York and London by 32,429 contracts to 275,699 during the week ending May 7. That was the lowest level since early April.

May 13 - 'We are the rightful owners' of Anadarko, Occidental CEO tells shareholders 
Occidental Petroleum Chief Executive Vicki Hollub on Friday touted her $38 billion deal for Anadarko Petroleum Corp and defended the pricey terms she negotiated in a 90-minute session with billionaire investor Warren Buffett to secure the deal without seeking shareholder approval. Hollub, 59, beat out larger rival Chevron Corp with a long-shot bid that some Occidental investors called risky because it saddles Occidental with $46 billion in new debt. By deftly lining up allies and cash, she put together a strategy that on Thursday prompted Chevron to withdraw.

May 13 - U.S. refiners' 2020 plans could shift as heavy fuel becomes expensive 
U.S. refiners had a plan for 2020: use their complex operations to maximize profits by making products that would comply with new international laws capping sulfur content in shipping fuels. But after a series of unexpected market moves, heavy, sour crude oil processed by U.S. refiners has become more expensive, eating up hoped-for profit windfalls before they even materialized, forcing refiners to rethink plans to invest more in heavy crude processing units.

May 10 - Chevron drops Anadarko takeover battle after Occidental raises bid
Chevron Corp abandoned its takeover bid for Anadarko Petroleum Corp on Thursday, outmaneuvered by Occidental Petroleum Corp's higher, $38 billion offer that included more than three times as much cash. With a financing assist from billionaire investor Warren Buffett, Occidental, which is one-quarter the size of Chevron, is the likely victor in a contest that again proved the allure of U.S. shale.

May 10 - In a sunset industry, economics of Adani's Australian coal mine questioned 
A crash in Australian thermal coal prices is raising fresh questions about the viability of a controversial $4 billion coal mine just a week ahead of a national election in which climate change is a key issue. Final approval of the Carmichael coal mine in Queensland, owned by India's Adani Enterprises, should come in "a matter of weeks, not months" following nearly a decade on the drawing board, the company's mining chief executive, Lucas Dow, told Reuters last month. 

May 10 - OPEC in the dark on oil supply as Russia, Iran cut exports 
OPEC is in the dark on the oil supply outlook for the second half of this year, with Iranian and Russian outages looking increasingly significant but Saudi Arabia reluctant to pump more due to fears of a price crash, sources in the organisation said. An oil contamination forced Russia to halt flows along the Druzhba pipeline, a key conduit for crude into Eastern Europe and Germany, in April. The suspension left refiners scrambling to find supplies and its duration is unclear. Iran's oil exports are likely to drop further in May as the United States tightens the screw on Tehran's main source of income. Shipments from Venezuela, also under U.S. sanctions, could fall more in coming weeks.

May 10 - Lacklustre gasoline, naphtha markets pummel Asian refining margins 
A weak light oil distillates market, awash in supplies, has sent Asia's refining margin plunging below $3 a barrel this week for the first time since February, with no short-term rebound in sight for naphtha or gasoline. With some refineries coming back on stream after outages or maintenance, coinciding with lower demand from Indonesia, the region's top gasoline importer, Asia's gasoline refining margin, or crack, dived 54 percent to $2.83 a barrel by Thursday compared with the start of the week. 

May 10 - China's Sinopec, CNPC skip Iran oil buys for May as U.S. sanctions waivers end -sources 
China Petrochemical Corp (Sinopec Group) and China National Petroleum Corp (CNPC), the country's top state-owned refiners, are skipping Iranian oil purchases for loading in May after Washington ended sanction waivers to turn up pressure on Tehran, three people with knowledge of the matter said. The United States has decided not to renew any exemptions for sanctions on Iran, taking a tougher line than expected on the expiry of the waivers. The waivers were granted last November to buyers of Iranian oil.

May 10 - Japan refiners tap more oil from Middle East to replace Iran supply 
Japanese refiners are tapping more oil from the Middle East after the United States ended all waivers from sanctions on Iran starting from this month. Fuji Oil Co bought 1.5 million barrels of Oman crude, Banoco Arab Medium from Bahrain, and Upper Zakum, an Abu Dhabi grade, to load in June in a spot tender held last month, according to trade sources.

May 10 - How Total's CEO pounced on Anadarko's African energy assets 
It took Total's chief executive and a small group of advisers just days to line up the French energy major's biggest acquisition in almost two decades when it agreed to buy the African assets of U.S. firm Anadarko. Patrick Pouyanne pounced after Occidental Corp trumped Chevron's $33 billion bid for Anadarko in April with an offer that includes raising financing by selling some of Anadarko's operations worth up to $15 billion. Chevron walked away from the race on Thursday.

May 10 - Oil quality problems at Russia's Ust-Luga seen lasting until May 11 - trade 
Russian oil quality from the Baltic port of Ust-Luga was improving on Thursday but was still not good enough for refiners in Europe, with required standards expected to be reached only by May 11, trading sources said. Oil contamination at the port, with organic chlorides that can destroy refining equipment, was first reported late last month.

May 10 - Mexico ditches outside help for refinery plan, says Pemex can oversee 
Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador said on Thursday Pemex will oversee construction of a new refinery, dismissing private sector suitors for the project and fueling fresh doubts about the financial health of the cash-strapped state oil firm. Lopez Obrador told his regular morning news conference that the firms invited to bid had balked at his $8 billion price tag for the facility and could not meet the government's three-year construction deadline, while Pemex could.

May 09 - Trading houses caught in crossfire of Russian oil contamination
Trading houses Vitol, Glencore and Trafigura are caught in the crossfire between Russian oil producers and Western buyers, which have refused to take contaminated Russian crude bought by the traders. At least 10 crude tankers with 1 million tonnes of oil, worth more than $500 million in normal circumstances, are marooned across Europe and still looking for buyers because they have been tainted with organic chloride.

May 09 - U.S. crude stocks fall 4 mln barrels as imports fall
U.S. crude oil stockpiles fell unexpectedly last week, the Energy Information Administration said on Wednesday, and strong gasoline demand could point to additional drawdowns in coming weeks as driving season approaches. Crude inventories fell by 4 million barrels in the week to May 3, compared with analysts' expectations for an increase of 1.2 million barrels.

May 09 - Norwegian oil companies seek mediation after wage talks break down
Wage talks between Norwegian oil firms and their employees broke down on Thursday, setting the stage for mediation later this year in order to prevent a strike, Norwegian Oil and Gas (NOG) said in a statement on Thursday. While Norway's collective bargaining rules prevent the two largest unions involved in the talks from going on strike this year, the smaller of the three, representing close to 1,000 workers, has the right to do so if no deal is ultimately reached.

May 09 - Marathon Petroleum combines midstream units, surprise loss drags down shares
Marathon Petroleum Corp said on Wednesday it would combine its midstream units in a $9 billion deal, but shares fell more than 5 percent following a surprise quarterly loss on lower-than-expected refining margins. The deal comes months after the U.S. refiner said it had been weighing a possible merger of MPLX and Andeavor Logistics LP, the two master limited partnerships (MLPs) in its midstream segment that transport, store and market crude oil and its refined products. 

May 09 - Saudi Arabia's oil exports to stay below 7 mln bpd in June- Gulf source
Saudi Arabia is expected to keep its crude exports below 7 million barrels per day in June, while output will stay under its production quota under a global deal to cut oil supply, a Gulf source familiar with Saudi oil plans said on Wednesday. This shows how Riyadh is reluctant to boost oil supply too quickly and risk a price crash and a build-up in inventories, despite pressure from Washington to reduce oil prices.

May 09 - China's crude conundrum: How to replace Iranian oil? - Russell
China's monthly crude oil imports jumped to a record in April, and while it's likely May will see a pullback, the broader question is how the world's biggest importer is going to fare without supplies from Iran? The market consensus in the wake of Wednesday's customs data was that imports, which hit 10.64 million barrels per day (bpd), were boosted as Chinese refiners stocked up on Iranian crude ahead of the expiry of U.S. waivers on purchases from Tehran.

May 08 - China April crude oil imports hit monthly record, refiners stocked up ahead of sanctions 
China's crude oil imports in April unexpectedly surged to a record despite refinery maintenance outages and tepid domestic fuel demand, customs data showed, as state-run refiners built up stocks of Iranian crude oil anticipating a sanctions clampdown. Imports last month were 43.73 million tonnes, equal to 10.64 million barrels per day (bpd), according to data from the Chinese General Administration of Customs.

May 08 - Iran says it is close to EU oil sales deal despite U.S. sanctions - report 
Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif told Russian news agency RIA on Tuesday that Iran was close to an oil sales deal with the European Union, despite the sanctions which have been re-imposed by the United States. "Iran and the EU are on the brink of agreement, which, despite the return of unilateral American sanctions, will make Iranian oil sales possible," he was quoted as saying.

May 08 - Petrobras plan to end refining monopoly in Brazil comes with caveats 
Brazil's Petroleo Brasileiro SA drew plaudits from investors last month for announcing a plan to sell off eight of its refineries in a process the company says could fetch some $15 billion. But analysts and industry experts say that while the divestments will help Petrobras shore up its finances, it may fail to create a competitive refining market in Brazil, an oft-stated goal of regulators and Petrobras executives.

May 08 - Enbridge seeking at least 8-year oil shipping commitments on Canada Mainline, worrying small producers 
Canada's Enbridge is asking oil shippers to sign at least eight-year contracts to move crude on its Mainline pipeline network, as it proposes to shift away from a monthly allocation system, people with knowledge of the matter told Reuters. The minimum term Enbridge Inc is seeking, previously unreported, is raising fears among small Canadian producers that they will lose out to bigger players, at a time when pipeline congestion has damaged the energy sector's outlook.

May 08 - Iraq close to signing $53 bln deal with Exxon, PetroChina; denies Iran link 
Iraq is close to signing a $53 billion, 30-year energy agreement with Exxon Mobil and PetroChina, Prime Minister Adel Abdul Mahdi said on Tuesday, denying any link between the mega-project and U.S. permission for Iraq to do business with Iran.
Iraq expects to make $400 billion over the 30 years the deal will be in effect, the prime minister said. The southern mega-project involves the development of the Nahr Bin Umar and Artawi oilfields and raising production from the two fields to 500,000 barrels per day (bpd) from around 125,000 bpd now, Abdul Mahdi said.

May 08 - Midwest diesel demand sluggish on farmers' planting delays 
Diesel demand in the U.S. Midwest has shown signs of weakness, dropping prices to seasonal lows not seen since 2016, due to wet conditions in the region forcing farmers to delay planting. Farmers typically use more diesel during the spring to power tractors and other equipment to plant crops. However, planting is behind schedule this year, with corn only 10 percent planted in Illinois so far, versus 66 percent on average, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

May 08 - Oil prices correct lower on hedge fund sales: Kemp 
Hedge fund managers have started to increase their bearish oil positions for the first time since the start of the year, amid signs the previous bull run had become overextended and prices were ripe for a correction.  Hedge funds and other money managers were net sellers of the six major petroleum futures and options contracts in the week to April 30, bringing to an end a record-breaking 15-week run of net purchases.

May 06 - Iran using all resources to sell oil in "grey market" - deputy minister 
Iran has mobilised all its resources to sell oil in a "grey market", bypassing U.S. sanctions that Tehran sees as illegitimate, state media quoted Deputy Oil Minister Amir Hossein Zamaninia as saying on Sunday. The United States, which last year withdrew from a 2015 Iran nuclear deal with world powers, has told buyers of Iranian oil to stop purchases by May 1 or face sanctions. 

May 06 - Occidental tweaks $38 bln Anadarko bid to remove shareholder vote 
Occidental Petroleum Corp increased the cash component of its $38 billion bid to acquire Anadarko Petroleum Corp on Sunday, removing a requirement for any deal to receive the approval of Occidental's shareholders. The move means Occidental shareholders who oppose the bid, including T Rowe Price, will not get an opportunity to vote it down. It adds more certainty to the offer for Anadarko, but also risks the ire of billionaire investor Carl Icahn, who sources have said has been amassing a stake in Occidental to challenge its Anadarko offer.

May 06 - Saudi Arabia raises June crude prices to Asia and Europe, cuts to U.S.  
Top oil exporter Saudi Arabia has raised its crude oil prices for June to its Asian and European customers, and cut prices to the United States, a signal that Riyadh is in no hurry to boost oil supply ahead of an OPEC meeting next month. Saudi Aramco raised the June price for its Arab Light grade for Asian customers by $0.70 a barrel versus May to a premium of $2.10 per barrel to the Oman/Dubai average, the state oil company said on Sunday.

May 06 - Mercuria enters LNG trading after poaching EDF team
Mercuria Energy Group is building a liquefied natural gas desk with the hire of three LNG traders from French utility EDF's trading arm, having eyed the market for several years, sources familiar with the matter said. The traders, Julien Bourdeau, Andrea Nardella and James Bloom, were London-based and resigned within the last two weeks, one of the sources said.

May 06 - Hedge funds cut bullish U.S. crude bets for first time since Feb - CFTC 
Hedge funds and other money managers cut their bullish wagers on U.S. crude oil last week for the first time since February as prices fell on expectations supply would decline, the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) said on Friday. The speculator group cut its combined futures and options position in New York and London by 18,689 contracts to 308,130 during the week ending April 30.

May 06 - Two of Venezuela's four crude upgraders still shuttered after blackout -document 
Two of Venezuela's four crucial crude upgraders, needed to convert extra-heavy crude from the Orinoco oil belt into exportable grades, remained shuttered a month after a major blackout, according to a document seen by Reuters on Saturday. State-owned oil company PDVSA nonetheless boosted its production of upgraded crude to 313,000 barrels on May 2 and 326,000 barrels on May 3, up from 298,000 in early April, as its two other upgraders and the Sinovensa mixing facility - a joint venture with China's CNPC- came close to or exceeded expectations, the PDVSA document showed.

May 06 - Oil market will tighten sharply when U.S. refineries return from maintenance: Kemp 
U.S. commercial crude oil inventories have been rising in recent weeks, which some observers have interpreted as evidence the global oil market is adequately supplied and blame for a sudden decline in oil prices. But this narrative cannot explain the steep backwardation in futures prices for global grades such as Brent, which is usually associated with a market that is significantly under-supplied.

May 06 - Louis Dreyfus could consider selling stake to regional player 
Louis Dreyfus Company, one of the world's biggest agricultural commodities houses, may consider selling a stake to a regional player to support its development although there are no specific plans to do so, the company said on Friday. Agricultural commodities traders have been grappling with lower profits from sourcing and shipping commodities such as grain and oilseeds, prompting cutbacks in trading teams, investments in food processing activities and acquisition speculation.

May 03 - Clean oil arrives in Belarus as Russia tackles tainted fuel flows 
Belarus said on Thursday that clean oil had reached it via the Druzhba pipeline from Russia, after several countries suspended such imports due to a contamination scandal that shocked the oil market and forced some states to open up strategic reserves. Poland, Germany, Ukraine, Slovakia and other countries halted Russian oil imports via the pipeline last week after finding contaminants that could damage refinery equipment.

May 03 - Occidental shareholders criticize bid for Anadarko, Buffett financing 
Several major Occidental Petroleum Corp shareholders have voiced opposition to the oil company's $38 billion bid for rival Anadarko Petroleum Corp that now includes a pricey financing deal with billionaire Warren Buffett. Occidental and Chevron Corp are battling for Anadarko and its holdings of nearly a quarter million acres in the Permian Basin, the top U.S. shale field, where low-cost production has helped turn the United States into the world's top oil producer at 12.3 million barrels per day.

May 03 - Iran will respond if OPEC members threaten its interests -oil minister 
Iran will respond if other OPEC members threaten its interests, Oil Minister Bijan Zanganeh said on Thursday amid rising pressures from Washington to bring Iranian crude sales to zero with the help of Tehran's regional rivals. The United States has demanded that buyers of Iranian oil stop purchases by the start of May or face sanctions, ending six months of waivers that had allowed OPEC member Iran’s eight top customers, most of them in Asia, to import limited volumes.

May 03 - Venezuelan PDVSA's oil exports steady in April, flow to Cuba continues -data 
Venezuela's state-run PDVSA exported 1.06 million barrels per day (bpd) of crude and refined products last month, an eight percent increase from March as the sanctioned company managed to boost shipments to China, according to Refinitiv Eikon data. The U.S. government imposed the toughest sanctions yet on PDVSA in late January, causing an abrupt disruption in flows of Venezuelan oil to the United States, formerly the OPEC-member country's first destination for crude exports.

May 03 - U.S. House backs Paris agreement in first climate bill in a decade 
The U.S. House of Representatives on Thursday passed its first climate-change bill in a decade, voting 231-190 to require that Trump administration keep the United States as a party to the Paris Climate Agreement. The Climate Action Now Act would require President Donald Trump to develop a plan for the United States to meet the goals it committed to in the Paris agreement to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions and block federal funds from being used to advance the formal U.S. withdrawal from the pact.

May 03 - Trump administration relaxes safety rules sparked by 2010 Gulf oil spill 
The Trump administration unveiled on Thursday its final plan to roll back offshore drilling safety measures put in place by the Obama administration after the fatal 2010 BP Deepwater Horizon oil spill, the worst in U.S. history, raising concerns by some groups over potential risks to workers and the environment. The changes are projected to save oil and gas drillers at least $1 billion over 10 years, according to an Interior Department spokeswoman.

May 03 - DowDuPont profit falls 28 pct on delayed shipments, weak chemical demand 
DowDuPont Inc posted a 28 percent slump in quarterly profit on Thursday, as floods in the United States delayed seed shipments and demand for its specialized chemicals used by the auto and smartphone industries declined, sending shares down about 6 percent. The company, which sells everything from circuit packaging and display materials for smartphones to lubricants and break fluid for car makers, reaffirmed its full-year forecast for net sales to be about flat.

May 02 - How Trump's hawkish advisors won debate on Iran oil sanctions
U.S. President Donald Trump's unexpected decision to ban all Iranian oil purchases after May 1 - ending exemptions for eight nations - came after hawkish economic and security advisors allayed the president's fears of an oil price hike, according to three sources familiar with the internal debate. The unprecedented move to fully sever Tehran’s financial lifeline - finalized just days before the April 22 announcement - underscores the influence of hard-liners within Trump’s National Security Council, which two of the sources said were the biggest advocates for the decision. They had for months argued for tightening the sanctions over the objections of State Department officials who favored allowing some partners and allies to keep buying Iranian oil.

May 02 - U.S. crude stocks soar 9.9 mln bbls to highest since Sept 2017 -EIA
U.S. crude stockpiles, including Gulf Coast inventories, rose last week to their highest since September 2017 as production set a new record high, imports rose while refining rates fell, the Energy Information Administration said on Wednesday. Gasoline stockpiles also increased unexpectedly after 10 weeks of drawdowns, while distillate inventories fell, the EIA said in its weekly report.

May 02 - Goal of June OPEC meeting to extend output cuts - Oman energy minister
The Organisation of the Petroleum Exporting Countries, Russia and other producers will be looking to extend their oil output cut agreement when they meet in June, Oman's energy minister Mohammed bin Hamad al-Rumhy said on Wednesday. The alliance, known as OPEC+, agreed last year to reduce output by 1.2 million barrels per day for six months from January 1.

May 02 - EPA has received DOE input for 2018 small refinery waivers - sources
The Department of Energy has given the Environmental Protection Agency its scoring results for the 40 outstanding 2018 applications made by small refineries for waivers from U.S. biofuel laws, four sources familiar with the matter said on Wednesday. The recommendations from the Energy Department are a crucial step in the EPA’s process for weighing the exemption requests, which can save refineries millions of dollars in regulatory costs and have become the center of a bitter dispute between the rival oil and corn industries.

May 02 - Poor April for global seaborne coal exporters masks overall resilience: Russell
Coal exporters suffered a poor April with seaborne volumes dropping from the previous month amid slack demand, but the overall picture for the industry so far this year isn't quite as gloomy as it may appear. April is not traditionally a strong month for coal demand as it falls between the winter and summer power demand peaks - declining seaborne volumes are to be expected.

May 02 - U.S. oil output decelerates in response to lower prices: Kemp
The second U.S. shale oil drilling boom has started to cool as a decline in oil prices since the end of the third quarter of 2018 filters through to lower well boring and completion rates. The first boom ended when prices plunged in the second half of 2014; something similar is happening now, albeit on a milder scale corresponding to the smaller fall in prices.

May 02 - Republican senator says Trump will not waive U.S. shipping rules
A Republican U.S. senator on Wednesday said President Donald Trump will not waive rules requiring that only U.S.-flagged ships move natural gas from American ports to Puerto Rico and the U.S. Northeast. The nearly 100-year-old Jones Act mandates the use of U.S.-flagged vessels to transport merchandise between U.S. coasts. Republican senators said the administration was seriously considering waiving the requirements for 10 years. Bloomberg News reported last week that Trump was leaning in favor of some kind of waiver.

May 01 - The debate behind Trump's move to tighten Iran oil sanctions
U.S. President Donald Trump's unexpected decision to ban all Iranian oil purchases after May 1 - ending exemptions for eight nations - came after hawkish economic and security advisors allayed the president's fears of an oil price hike, according to three sources familiar with the internal debate. The unprecedented move to fully sever Tehran’s financial lifeline - finalized just days before the April 22 announcement - underscores the strong influence of hard-liners within Trump’s inner circle.

May 01 - How Russia contaminated $2.7 bln of oil exports to Europe
It was a quiet Easter holiday at the offices of major European oil companies and refiners when an email in Russian landed. "What the hell does it say?" one manager recalled thinking as he sent it to his Moscow office for translation.He was in for a shock. The letter was from the state pipeline company in Belarus, Gomeltransneft, telling oil refiners and pipeline operators in Poland, Ukraine, Hungary, Slovakia and the Czech Republic that the crude heading towards them from Russia down the 5,500 km (3,400 mile) Druzhba pipeline network was heavily contaminated.

May 01 - Buffett's Berkshire helps bankroll Occidental's $38 bln bid for Anadarko
Warren Buffett's Berkshire Hathaway Inc committed $10 billion on Tuesday to Occidental Petroleum Corp's $38 billion cash-and-stock bid for Anadarko Petroleum Corp, boosting its chances of snatching a deal from Chevron Corp. Occidental and Chevron are locked in the biggest oil-industry takeover battle in years as they eye Anadarko's prized assets in West Texas' huge Permian shale oilfield.

May 01 - OPEC oil output hits four-year low in April on Iran, Venezuela
OPEC oil supply hit a four-year low in April, a Reuters survey found, due to further involuntary declines in sanctions-hit Iran and Venezuela and output restraint by top exporter Saudi Arabia. The 14-member Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries pumped 30.23 million barrels per day (bpd) this month, the survey showed, down 90,000 bpd from March and the lowest OPEC total since 2015, the Reuters survey showed.

May 01 - U.S. crude output declines in Feb for second month
U.S. crude oil production fell 187,000 barrels per day in February to 11.7 million bpd as output dropped in the Gulf of Mexico and key on-shore oil producing states including Oklahoma and North Dakota, according to U.S. government data on Tuesday. The production decline was the second consecutive slip, following a fall in January, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration data.

May 01 - Diesel traders anticipate shortage, but not just yet: Kemp
Gasoil traders expect the middle distillates market to stay well supplied until almost the end of 2019 before swinging into deficit with the introduction of new maritime fuel regulations. Calendar spreads for low-sulphur gasoil delivered to Europe's Amsterdam-Rotterdam-Antwerp hub are currently in contango through until October before shifting to backwardation from November onwards.

Apr 30 - Iran to keep exporting crude oil despite U.S. pressure - Iran president
Iran will continue to export oil despite U.S. pressure aimed at reducing the nation's crude oil shipments to zero, Iran President Hassan Rouhani said in a speech broadcast live on Iranian state TV on Tuesday. "America's decision that Iran's oil exports must reach zero is a wrong and mistaken decision, and we won't let this decision be executed and operational" Rouhani said.

Apr 30 - Anadarko to negotiate sale to Occidental 'superior' to Chevron deal
Anadarko Petroleum Corp said on Monday it would negotiate with Occidental Petroleum Corp over its $38 billion cash-and-stock bid, after determining it could get a better deal than its agreed $33 billion sale to Chevron Corp. The development represents a breakthrough in Occidental Chief Executive Vicki Hollub's two-year effort to buy Anadarko, one of the top U.S. oil and gas producers in the lucrative Permian Basin in Texas and New Mexico. Anadarko announced a deal with Chevron on April 12 after snubbing a higher bid from Occidental, prompting Occidental to try to upend the Chevron deal.

Apr 30 - Guards repel assault on Libya's biggest oilfield as Tripoli battle rages
An armed group attacked Libya's largest oilfield on Monday, but was repelled after clashes with its protection force, while fighting escalated in eastern commander Khalifa Haftar's effort to capture the capital Tripoli. The state oil company National Oil Corporation (NOC) said unknown gunmen fired a rocket propelled grenade at a control station of the El Sharara oilfield. Guards at the site eventually repelled the attackers, an oil engineer there told Reuters.

Apr 30 - Clean Russian oil has reached Belarus via key pipeline, Moscow says
Clean Russian oil had reached the border with Belarus by midday on Monday, a Russian official said, five days after European refineries suspended imports because of contamination in the Druzhba pipeline. Poland, Germany, Ukraine, Slovakia and other countries on the network suspended oil imports via the Druzhba pipeline after finding contaminants that can damage refinery equipment.

Apr 30 - Oil prices stumble as hedge funds become overextended: Kemp
Hedge fund managers added even more bullish long positions in crude oil and refined fuels last week, but positions showed signs of becoming stretched, setting prices up for a setback. Hedge funds and other money managers were net buyers of another 46 million barrels of futures and options in the six major petroleum contracts in the week to April 23, according to exchange and regulatory data.

Apr 30 - U.S. oil-storage industry fines soar on air, water violations
Fines for violations of air, water and waste regulations by U.S. petroleum storage facilities so far this year have exceeded all of last year - even without including two major Houston-area disasters in the last month still under investigation - according to a Reuters analysis of federal data. Federal and state fines of storage-tank operators totaled $5.2 million as of April, from $4.1 million for all of 2018 and $2.5 million in 2017, according to data on federal and state penalties analyzed by Reuters from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

Apr 29 - Trafigura ships its first-ever West Texas Light cargo - source
Trafigura exported its first-ever cargo of U.S. West Texas Light (WTL) oil last month, according to a source familiar with the matter, sending the shipment to South Korea, which has been testing this oil as a replacement for Iranian barrels. Reuters reported earlier this month that South Korea has been testing WTL, a super-light oil, as a possible substitute for Iranian condensate as it seeks alternatives for those shipments after Washington reimposed sanctions on the Middle Eastern nation. 

Apr 29 - U.S. sanctions on Iran, Venezuela set up crunch for heavier oil
Tighter U.S. sanctions on Iranian oil planned for May are adding to a wealth of factors curbing global supply of heavy-medium crude, driving up prices for scarcer barrels and setting up a stand-off between buyers and sellers. The new curbs on Iranian exports come on top of Washington's earlier ban on Venezuelan crude and output snags in Angola, another big producer of the dense crude grades that best yield lucrative refined products like jet fuel.

Apr 29 - Trump says he told OPEC to lower oil prices
U.S. President Donald Trump said on Friday he called the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries and told the cartel to lower oil prices. "Gasoline prices are coming down. I called up OPEC, I said you've got to bring them down. You've got to bring them down," Trump told reporters.

Apr 29 - Putin flags wider investigation into contaminated Russian oil
Russia's pipeline monopoly Transneft is investigating a case of contaminated oil, Russian President Vladimir Putin said on Saturday, adding that this could lead to a wider inquiry, possibly including law enforcement agencies. Poland, Germany, Ukraine and some other countries suspended imports of Russian oil via the Druzhba pipeline this week due to the contamination. Russia said it plans to restore the pipeline to Europe to stability in two weeks.

Apr 29 - Anadarko to pursue deal talks with Occidental Petroleum-sources
Anadarko Petroleum Corp, the U.S. oil and gas exploration and production company that agreed this month to sell itself to Chevron Corp for $33 billion, decided on Sunday to begin negotiations to sell itself to Occidental Petroleum Corp instead, according to people familiar with the matter. The bidding war for Anadarko underscores the value of its assets in the lucrative Permian Basin of West Texas and New Mexico. The vast shale field holds oil and gas deposits that can produce supplies for decades using low-cost drilling techniques.

Apr 29 - No stone unturned: S.Korea to sweep world for Iran oil replacement
South Korea will likely return to a familiar game plan to replace Iranian oil it will no longer have access to after May now that the United States intends to tighten sanctions on Iranian exports. South Korea is the biggest buyer of Iranian condensate, an ultra-light oil prized by the country's refiners as a raw material for petrochemicals manufacturing.

Apr 29 - Putin hopes Iran will continue oil exports despite U.S. warning
Russian President Vladimir Putin said on Saturday he hoped Iranian oil exports would continue despite Washington's efforts to stop them. Washington has demanded that buyers of Iranian crude halt purchases by May 1 or face sanctions, a move to choke off Tehran’s oil revenues. 

Apr 29 - Japanese utilities turn away from coal plans amid green energy boom
Japanese utilities are turning away from new coal-fired power projects in the country amid tighter environmental regulations and increasing demand for greener energy from their key customers. Osaka Gas last week pulled out of plans to build a 1.2 gigawatt coal-fired project, which followed the cancellation in January of a 2 GW coal power station by Kyushu Electric Power, Tokyo Gas and Idemitsu Kosan.

Apr 29 - Air strike hits Tripoli as eastern Libyan forces send warship to oil port
Air strikes hit the Libyan capital late on Saturday as eastern forces loyal to Khalifa Haftar pursued a three-week campaign to take Tripoli and also confirmed for the first time they had dispatched a warship to an oil port. The Libyan National Army (LNA) force of Haftar, which is allied to a parallel government, has repeatedly flown air strikes since starting an offensive three weeks ago to take the capital held by the internationally recognised government.

Apr 29 - Exxon Mobil, Chevron dogged by refining, chemicals troubles
Exxon Mobil Corp and Chevron Corp on Friday reported lower profits, citing lower margins and refining weaknesses, areas that have plagued the two oil companies off and on for more than a year. Exxon posted the first loss in its refining business since 2009, citing the worst refining margins on gasoline and other profits it had seen in a decade. Chevron reported its refining and chemical profits fell 65 percent.

Apr 26 - U.S. oil shipments sailing for Australia highlight growing reach
Two cargoes of U.S. crude oil have been booked to sail to Australia, trade sources and data companies said, highlighting the increasing global reach of exports from the United States. Aframax tanker Esther Spirit loaded U.S. oil in early April at Enterprise Houston Terminal and is scheduled to discharge at Kwinana in Western Australia on May 20, ship-tracking data from Refinitiv and Vortexa showed.

Apr 26 - Poland, Russia, Belarus and Ukraine to talk on polluted Russian oil
Representatives of Poland, Russia, Belarus and Ukraine will meet on Friday in Minsk, the capital of Belarus, to discuss how to solve the problem of polluted Russian oil, Poland's pipeline operator PERN said on Thursday night. Poland, Germany and Slovakia suspended imports of Russian oil via a major pipeline, citing poor quality and triggering a rare crisis over supply from the world's second-largest crude exporter.

Apr 26 - Warp factor: Asia's LNG markets distorted by oil price surge
Asia's liquefied natural gas market is being distorted as the cost of LNG bought under long-term contracts linked to oil prices jumps to double spot gas cargoes amid tighter U.S. sanctions on Iran's crude exports and cuts in OPEC oil supply. The price gap between LNG traded in the spot market and term cargoes linked to benchmark Brent crude oil has stretched to its widest in about 8 years, driving some buyers locked in to term deals to try to delay shipments or look to adjust contracts.

Apr 26 - Iran will not let any country replace its oil in the market - ministry
Iran will not allow any country replace its oil sales in the global market, the Foreign Ministry said on Thursday, after the United States told importers to halt Iranian purchases from May. Washington has decided not to renew its exemptions from U.S. sanctions against Iran that it granted last year to buyers of Iranian oil. 

Apr 26 - Iraq says it has enough oil capacity to meet customer needs
Iraq's oil minister said on Thursday his country had the capacity to increase its oil production to 6 million barrels per day (bpd) if needed, but it was committed to OPEC-led output cuts and would not take unilateral action to boost supply. Thamer Ghadhban also said there were no acute oil shortages for the time being, but Iraq would continue to monitor the market to assess any need for additional barrels at the next OPEC meeting, due in June.

Apr 26 - Anadarko Petroleum profit beats on higher sales volumes, lower costs
Anadarko Petroleum Corp, the target of a bidding war between Occidental Petroleum Corp and Chevron Corp, beat analysts' estimates for quarterly profit on Thursday, fueled by higher sales volume and lower costs. Occidental made a counterbid for Anadarko's vast shale holdings in the prolific Permian Basin of West Texas and New Mexico on Wednesday, offering $57 billion compared with Chevron's $50 billion bid, both including debt. 

Apr 26 - Pipeline operator Noble Midstream Partners up for sale -sources
Noble Midstream Partners LP, a pipeline operator controlled by U.S. oil and gas exploration and production company Noble Energy Inc, is up for sale, people familiar with the matter said on Thursday. The decision to seek to sell Noble Midstream Partners comes at a time when oil and gas companies are coming under intense pressure from shareholders to direct their focus on core operations to maximize returns and minimize expenses.

Apr 25 - Occidental offers $38 bln for Anadarko, topping Chevron
Occidental Petroleum Corp on Wednesday started the first takeover battle for a major oil company in years, offering $38 billion for Anadarko Petroleum Corp, a bid that topped a $33 billion offer by Chevron Corp. Both suitors are offering a premium for Anadarko's holdings in the Permian Basin of West Texas and New Mexico. The vast shale field holds oil and gas deposits that can produce supplies for decades using new, low-cost drilling techniques.

Apr 25 - Saudi Arabia says China has not yet asked for more oil amid tighter Iran sanctions
Saudi Arabia's energy minister Khalid al-Falih told Reuters on Thursday that China has "not yet" asked for more crude oil after the United States decided to end sanction waivers on Iranian oil imports that had permitted Beijing to keep buying from Tehran. The United States re-imposed sanctions against Iran's oil exports last November, but Washington initially allowed the eight biggest buyers of Iranian oil - China is number 1 - to keep purchasing limited imports for six months ending April.

Apr 25 - Saudi's Falih sees no need for swift output action after Iran oil waivers end
Saudi Arabia's energy minister said on Wednesday he saw no need to raise oil output immediately after the United States ends waivers granted to buyers of Iranian crude, but added that the kingdom would respond to customers' needs if asked for more oil. Khalid al-Falih said he was guided by oil market fundamentals not prices, and that the world's top oil exporter remained focused on balancing the global oil market.

Apr 25 - U.S. oil exports to Asia to slow as Gulf Coast grades rise -traders
U.S. crude shipments to Asia are expected to slow over the coming weeks as the window to profitably send crude to that continent has repeatedly slammed shut over the last month as U.S. Gulf Coast grades rallied, traders said. U.S. Gulf Coast crude grades have strengthened over the past few weeks as U.S. crude's discount to Brent has widened. Grades got a further boost after the spread hit its widest level in a month after the United States this week demanded that buyers of Iranian oil stop purchases by May 1 or face sanctions. 

Apr 25 - U.S. crude stockpiles jump on rise in imports - EIA
U.S. crude oil stockpiles rose last week to their highest in about a year and a half as imports increased, even as refiners sharply ramped up output ahead of the summer driving season, the Energy Information Administration said on Wednesday. Crude inventories rose by 5.5 million barrels in the week to April 19, much more than analysts' expectations in a Reuters poll for an increase of 1.3 million barrels.

Apr 25 - Russian oil flow contamination roils Europe's refiners
The quality of Russian oil flowing to northern and central Europe has deteriorated significantly in recent days, traders and Russian officials said, roiling the continent's refining industry. Oil flows via the Baltic port of Ust Luga and via the Druzhba pipeline to Belarus, Poland, Germany, Hungary and the Czech Republic have been contaminated with high levels of organic chloride since April 19.

Apr 25 - Australia's pro-coal lobby should heed South Korea warning: Russell
A change in South Korea's energy policy should have absolutely no bearing on the current Australian election campaign, but it should, as it's a stark warning to politicians who still see a rosy future for coal mines and exports. Australia is the world's largest exporter of coal and South Korea has been a reliable customer for decades, taking 43.4 million tonnes of the polluting fuel from Australia in 2018, according to vessel-tracking data compiled by Refinitiv.

Apr 25 - Hedge funds bet big on spike in U.S. gasoline prices: Kemp
Hedge funds are betting heavily on higher gasoline prices this summer, anticipating that refiners will struggle to produce enough gasoline to replenish depleted stocks while ramping up diesel output for the shipping industry. Hedge funds and other money managers have accumulated 118 million barrels of bullish long positions in futures and options linked to U.S. gasoline prices compared with just 3 million barrels betting on prices falling.

Apr 25 - Shell strikes big oil in Blacktip well of Gulf Of Mexico
Royal Dutch Shell's U.S. unit said on Wednesday that it had made one of its biggest oil discoveries in the Blacktip deepwater well in the U.S. Gulf of Mexico. Blacktip, operated by Shell and co-owned by U.S. oil giant Chevron Corp, Equinor ASA and Repsol, is the company's second material discovery in the Perdido Corridor, Shell's Upstream Director Andy Brown said.

Apr 24 - Gulf OPEC members ready to raise output if there is demand - sources
Gulf OPEC producers can step in to meet any oil supply shortage following a U.S. decision to end waivers on buyers of Iranian crude, but will first wait to see whether there is actual demand, OPEC and industry sources said. The United States has decided not to renew exemptions from sanctions against Iran granted last year to buyers of Iranian oil, taking a tougher line than expected. 

Apr 24 - Tighter U.S. sanctions on Iranian oil will cost Asia but supply will flow
Asian buyers of Iranian crude are well placed to overcome the end of U.S. sanctions waivers as they have demonstrated they can live without it and as global producers have the capacity to make up a shortfall, according to analysts and trade data. The United States on Monday demanded buyers of Iranian oil stop purchases by May or face sanctions, ending six months of waivers which allowed Iran's eight biggest buyers, most of them in Asia, to continue importing limited volumes. 

Apr 24 - Global oil markets adequately supplied - IEA
Global oil markets are adequately supplied and spare production capacity remained at comfortable levels, the International Energy Agency (IEA) said on Tuesday, while highlighting the need to avoid higher oil prices amid fragile global economic growth. The agency's comments come against the backdrop of the United States tightening its sanctions on leading oil producer Iran.

Apr 24 - Oil traders to Saudi Arabia: "show us the barrels" - Kemp
"The United States, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates ... are committed to ensuring that global oil markets remain adequately supplied," the White House said in a press statement issued on Monday. "Oil markets are well-supplied and oil inventory levels are seasonally strong," the U.S. State Department wrote in an accompanying briefing note explaining the rationale for eliminating sanctions waivers for buyers of Iranian oil.

Apr 24 - Glut forces LNG producers to offer flexible deals from global portfolios
The world's biggest liquefied natural gas (LNG) producers including Shell, Total and Petronas are increasingly selling from global supply pools instead of dedicated projects as buyers leverage a fuel surplus to force ever more flexible deals. This marks an accelerated turning from traditional long-term contracts that lock customers into taking regular volumes from specific projects under oil-linked pricing formulas.

Apr 24 - Iran sanctions decision rewards hedge fund oil bulls: Kemp
Hedge fund managers added even more bullish long positions in crude oil and gasoline last week as traders bet prices will continue rising despite a sluggish economy and political sensitivity around escalating motoring costs. The Trump administration's decision to toughen sanctions on Iran's oil exports has rewarded fund managers who have been increasingly confident that the oil market will tighten significantly this year, lifting prices.

Apr 24 - Sanctions on Iranian oil bring U.S. drivers pain at the pump
American middle class consumers are enjoying the strongest wage growth in a decade, but higher gasoline prices are eating a good chunk of that increase for many, and it looks like pump prices are headed higher. Gasoline pump prices have already jumped about 25% this year, the fastest rate in three years. Trump administration sanctions against Iranian crude oil exports had something to do with that, and this week's move to tighten sanctions could soon send prices even higher.

Apr 23 - U.S. to end all waivers on imports of Iranian oil, crude price jumps
The United States on Monday demanded that buyers of Iranian oil stop purchases by May 1 or face sanctions, a move to choke off Tehran's oil revenues which sent crude prices to six-month highs on fears of a potential supply crunch. The Trump administration on Monday said it will not renew exemptions granted last year to buyers of Iranian oil, a more stringent than expected decision that caught several key importers who have been pleading with Washington to continue buying Iranian oil sanctions-free. 

Apr 23 - Brazil's Petrobras revisits whistleblowers in wake of trading scandal
Brazil's Petroleo Brasileiro SA is re-examining its treatment of whistleblower complaints after the indictment of six of the state-run oil firm's traders in December indicated that efforts to root out corruption had faltered, according to three people familiar with the matter. In recent weeks, officials at Petrobras, as the firm is known, have summoned a number of current and former employees who had flagged instances of corruption at the company, particularly in relation to its trading operations, the sources said.

Apr 23 - In Iran oil sanctions poker game, Trump shows his hand, relies on other players: Russell 
U.S. President Donald Trump has shown his cards on sanctions against Iran's crude oil exports, but whether he has played a winning hand depends on what the other players are holding. The decision by the Trump administration not to renew any of the waivers extended six months ago to eight importers of Iranian crude, including top buyers China and India, is a clear escalation of Washington's campaign against Tehran's nuclear programme. 

Apr 23 - On South America's largest solar farm, Chinese power radiates
In an arid, lunar-like landscape in the sunny highlands of northern Argentina, South America's largest solar farm is rising, powered by funding and technology from China. Local officials said they had sought help at home, the United States and Europe without success. Potential lenders and partners, they said, were spooked by the project's size and the fiscal woes of Jujuy province, one of the poorest in the country.

Apr 23 - Halliburton sees signs of price recovery, shares dip
Halliburton Co sought to convince investors on Monday that weak pricing which has undermined oilfield services providers over four years was on the verge of turning a corner. Better-than-expected revenue in North America, along with the company's claim that prices were bottoming out, initially drove shares in the oilfield services giant almost 5 percent higher after it published first quarter results.

Apr 23 - Weak first quarter seen for U.S. refiners, but brighter summer expected
U.S. independent refiners are expected to roll out lower than expected first-quarter profits after a spate of outages, weak gasoline margins and a surge in the price of Canadian oil, according to analysts. Major independent refiners cut production dramatically during the quarter, with some electing to undergo maintenance rather than produce barrels at a time when gasoline margins slumped.

Apr 23 - JERA aims to double profit by FY25/26 with focus on LNG, renewable energy
JERA, Japan's biggest thermal power generator and the world's biggest buyer of liquefied natural gas (LNG), aims to double its profit by the financial year through March 2026 by stepping up investment in LNG and renewable energy, its new head said. The joint venture between Tokyo Electric Power Company Holdings and Chubu Electric Power Co became a major electricity generator this month with the takeover of 26 power stations owned by its two shareholders and representing about half of Japan's thermal power capacity.

Apr 18 - Spain's Repsol suspends swap deal for Venezuelan oil under U.S. pressure
Spain's Repsol has suspended its swaps of refined products for crude with Venezuela's state-run oil company PDVSA, people familiar with the matter said, as U.S. officials weigh penalties for foreign firms doing business with Venezuela. The Spanish oil company has been swapping fuel and waiving payments due from a joint venture with PDVSA in exchange for crude, even as the United States rolled out new sanctions aimed at ousting Venezuela's socialist President Nicolas Maduro.

Apr 18 - Aramco in talks to buy stake in refining business of India's Reliance
Saudi Aramco, the world's biggest oil producer, is in talks to buy a stake of atleast 20 percent in the refining and petrochemicals businesses of India's Reliance Industries Ltd, sources familiar with the matter said on Wednesday. State-owned Aramco plans to boost investments in refining and petrochemicals to secure new markets for its crude, and sees growth in chemicals as central to its downstream strategy to lessen the risk of a slowdown in oil demand.

Apr 18 - Australia's GrainCorp flags $29 mln earnings hit as China probes barley imports
Australia's GrainCorp Ltd said on Thursday it will take a A$40 million ($28.7 million) hit to half-year earnings, blaming international trade tensions and a severe drought, sending its shares to a three-week low. The country's largest listed agribusiness did not give further details, but industry sources said there had been a slowdown in Chinese demand for barley as Beijing considers whether to introduce tariffs on Australian supplies.

Apr 18 - U.S. crude stockpiles drop unexpectedly last week - EIA
U.S. crude oil stockpiles fell unexpectedly last week as imports dropped, while gasoline and distillate inventories decreased less than forecasts, the Energy Information Administration said on Wednesday. Crude inventories fell by 1.4 million barrels in week to April 12, compared with analysts' expectations for an increase of 1.7 million barrels. A majority of the decline came from the Midwest region, where inventories fell 2.4 million barrels to 135.3 million barrels.

Apr 18 - Energy Secretary Perry planning to leave Trump administration - source
U.S. Energy Secretary Rick Perry is planning to leave the Trump administration, but his departure is not imminent, a source familiar with the situation said on Wednesday.
Perry, a former governor of Texas who has taken a leading role in President Donald Trump's policy of boosting energy production, has been finalizing his departure, the source said.

Apr 18 - Indian refiners turn to OPEC, Mexico, U.S. to make up Iran oil gap
Indian refiners are increasing their planned purchases from OPEC nations, Mexico and the United States to make up for any loss of Iranian oil if the U.S. enforces sanctions more harshly from next month, sources and company officials said. All four Indian state-owned refiners that buy Iranian oil are confident of securing additional barrels from other producers, officials from the companies told Reuters.

Apr 18 - U.S. shale producers see rising ultralight crude output hitting pricing
Much of the new crude coming from the top U.S. shale field is so light that it is starting to affect pricing for the region's oil, producers attending an energy conference this week said. Permian producers generally sell their crude at WTI benchmark prices, but rising supplies of ultralight oil may require them to offer $1 to $2 a barrel discounts to refiners requiring heavier grades, some said. 

Apr 18 - Petrobras hikes diesel price, eyes divestments amid investor unease
Brazilian state-run oil firm Petroleo Brasileiro SA hiked diesel prices on Wednesday, and executives said the firm could expand its already aggressive divestment plan while arguing the company was completely free of political interference. In an impromptu news conference at the Rio de Janeiro headquarters of Petrobras, as the company is known, Chief Executive Roberto Castello Branco announced a diesel price hike of 10 cents per liter and said Petrobras has complete control over its pricing strategy.

Apr 18 - White House will tie Iran sanctions review to response by Saudi Arabia: Kemp
The White House will have to weigh costs and benefits carefully before tightening sanctions on Iran and Venezuela further – and decide whether the economic price is worth the diplomatic gains. If the White House toughens sanctions on Iran and Venezuela significantly (and the next decision on Iran sanctions is scheduled for the first week of May) any decision is likely to be tied to production increases by Saudi Arabia.

Apr 17 - China March refinery runs ease off record, crude output accelerates
Refinery output in China, the world's second-largest oil consumer, eased from record highs in March after maintenance shutdowns offset production from a new mega refinery. Refinery throughput in March rose 3.2 percent from a year earlier to 53.04 million tonnes, or 12.49 million barrels per day (bpd), data from the National Bureau of Statistics showed on Wednesday.

Apr 17 - Upstart Russian oil firm, with Goldman Sachs backing, bucks industry blues
In the frozen taiga of eastern Siberia, where bears roam in spring after waking from hibernation, an independent Russian oil company is bucking the domestic industry trend by rapidly ramping up its output and expanding operations. Irkutsk Oil Company, known by the Russian acronym INK, has increased its crude production levels 30-fold over the past decade and has negotiated access to a pipeline network that allows it reach the Asian market.

Apr 17 - Aramco in talks for 25 pct of Reliance's refining, petrochemical units - report
Saudi Aramco, the world's largest crude oil producer, is in "serious discussions" to acquire up to a 25 percent stake in Reliance Industries' refining and petrochemicals businesses, the Times of India reported on Wednesday. A minority stake sale could fetch around $10 billion to $15 billion, valuing the Indian company's refining and petrochemicals businesses at around $55 billion to 60 billion, the report said.

Apr 17 - Brazil government pledges to keep hand off Petrobras
Petroleo Brasileiro SA's market-based diesel pricing policy remains unchanged and Brazil's president has no intention of meddling in Petrobras' internal affairs, high-ranking government officials said on Tuesday. A call by President Jair Bolsonaro last week to the chief executive of Petrobras led the state-run company to call off a sharp diesel price increase and revived investor fears about political influence, hammering the share price of Petrobras.

Apr 17 - Turkey expects Washington to extend sanctions waiver on Iran oil
Turkey expects the United States to extend a waiver granted to Ankara to continue oil purchases from Iran without violating U.S. sanctions, Turkish presidential spokesman Ibrahim Kalin said on Tuesday. The U.S. reimposed sanctions in November on exports of Iranian oil after President Donald Trump unilaterally pulled out of a 2015 nuclear accord between Iran and six world powers. Washington is pressuring Iran to curtail its nuclear program and stop backing militant proxies across the Middle East.

Apr 17 - Venezuela's Guaido to seek to annul $8.7 bln Conoco award
Venezuelan opposition leader Juan Guaido will seek to annul an $8.7 billion arbitration award to U.S. oil producer ConocoPhillips as he moves to preserve foreign assets, Guaido's chief legal representative said on Tuesday. If accepted, the annulment request would halt enforcement of the award over the 2007 loss of Conoco's projects in the South American country. 

Apr 17 - Climate change targets are slipping out of reach: Kemp
For all the commentary around a transition to a clean energy system, the amount of carbon dioxide (CO2) in the atmosphere is still continuing to rise rapidly and shows no sign of slowing down. Climate change targets are slipping out of reach as the concentration of CO2 in the atmosphere continues to march higher, leaving policymakers confronting uncomfortable choices.

Apr 16 - U.S. shale output forecast to hit record 8.46 million bpd in May - EIA
U.S. crude oil output from seven major shale formations is expected to rise by about 80,000 barrels per day (bpd) in May to a record 8.46 million bpd, the U.S. Energy Information Administration said in its monthly drilling productivity report on Monday. The largest change is forecast in the Permian Basin of Texas and New Mexico, where output is expected to climb by 42,000 bpd to a fresh peak of about 4.14 million bpd in May.

Apr 16 - Hyundai Heavy says Aramco buys 17 pct stake in S.Korean refiner unit for $1.2 bln
The biggest shareholder in South Korean oil refiner Hyundai Oilbank said on Monday that state-owned Saudi Aramco had agreed to buy a 17 percent stake in its oil processing operations for 1.4 trillion won ($1.24 billion). Hyundai Heavy Industries Holdings said in a regulatory filing that it had signed a sales agreement with Saudi Aramco that included an option for Aramco to buy an additional 2.9 percent stake in Hyundai Oilbank.

Apr 16 - Hedge funds' oil positions start to look stretched
Hedge fund managers continue to accumulate positions in crude and gasoline in the most sustained bull market since 2017 but the market is starting to look stretched and the balance of risks is shifting to the downside. Hedge funds and other portfolio managers have boosted their net long position in the six most important petroleum futures and options contracts by 503 million barrels over the last 13 weeks.

Apr 16 - Petrobras CEO denies government interference after diesel price hike canceled
Roberto Castello Branco, chief executive officer of oil company Petroleo Brasileiro SA, denied there was government interference even after the state-controlled oil company delayed a diesel price hike after a call from President Jair Bolsonaro. Castello Branco, the CEO of Petrobras, said President Bolsonaro warned him in the call about the risks of a potential new truckers strike if diesel prices rose.

Apr 15 - Iran says U.S. pressures on Iran, Venezuela making oil market fragile
Iran's oil minister said on Sunday that U.S. sanctions on Iran and Venezuela and tensions in Libya have made the supply-demand balance in the global oil market fragile, and warned of consequences for increasing pressures on Tehran. Oil prices have risen more than 30 percent this year on the back of supply cuts led by the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries and U.S. sanctions on oil exporters Iran and Venezuela, plus escalating conflict in OPEC member Libya. 

Apr 15 - Abu Dhabi's pension fund joins KKR, BlackRock in ADNOC pipeline deal
Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (ADNOC) said on Sunday that Abu Dhabi Retirement Pensions and Benefits Fund (ADRPBF) has signed a deal to invest in a pipeline infrastructure entity that ADNOC is setting up with BlackRock and KKR. ADRPBF will invest 1.1 billion dirhams ($300 million) and will acquire a 3 percent stake in the newly formed entity, ADNOC Oil Pipelines, with BlackRock and KKR together holding 40 percent and ADNOC the remaining 57 percent, ADNOC said in a statement.

Apr 15 - Row with U.S. energy trader worsens Haiti's fuel crisis
A dispute between Haiti and a U.S. energy trading firm is leading to long blackouts and fuel shortages in the Caribbean nation, feeding anger at President Jovenel Moise's government following the collapse of a supply deal with Venezuela last year. The capital Port-au-Prince’s fragile power grid was dealt a blow when Novum Energy Trading Corp suspended shipments in February, leaving residents without electricity for days and many gas stations with no fuel at the pumps.

Apr 15 - China's commodity imports look tepid, may be slightly warmer: Russell
If you were looking for evidence that China's economy has lost momentum, you may be tempted to think that you've found it in the unimpressive growth, or lack thereof, in imports of major commodities in the first quarter. Customs data for the first quarter show only crude oil has recorded significant growth in import volumes in the first quarter, with copper data mixed and iron ore and coal dropping. 

Apr 15 - No further cut to Pemex credit rating expected - Mexican minister
Mexican Finance Minister Carlos Urzua said on Saturday he does not expect rating agencies to further downgrade the credit rating of state-owned energy company Pemex. With $106 billion in financial debt, Pemex is the world's most indebted oil company and is teetering on the brink of having its debt downgraded to below investment grade.

Apr 15 - Russia, OPEC may ditch oil deal to fight for market share - Russian minister
Russia and OPEC may decide to boost production to fight for market share with the United States but this would push oil prices as low as $40 per barrel, TASS news agency сited Russia's Finance Minister Anton Siluanov as saying on Saturday. "There is a dilemma. What should we do with OPEC: should we lose the market, which is being occupied by the Americans, or quit the deal?" Anton Siluanov, speaking in Washington, said, TASS reported.

Apr 15 - Chevron's Anadarko deal to pressure U.S. shale producers to explore sales
Oil major Chevron Corp's $33 billion deal on Friday to acquire Anadarko Petroleum Corp has some investors and industry executives asking whether it is time for other U.S. shale oil and gas producers to consider selling themselves. Anadarko has been one of the pioneers of the shale revolution, which turned the United States into the world's biggest oil producer, overtaking Russia and Saudi Arabia.

Apr 15 - U.S. EPA revives provision that may name refiners applying for biofuel waivers
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency on Friday took the first step to revive part of a rule that could, if finalized, reveal the names of oil refineries which applied for exemptions from the nation's biofuel laws. The move is seen as a win for the corn industry, which has criticized the waiver program due to its lack of transparency. 

Apr 15 - Hedge funds raise bullish crude bets in latest week - CFTC
Hedge funds and other money managers raised their bullish bets on U.S. crude in the week to April 9, as prices rose and oil touched a five-month high, the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) said on Friday. The speculator group raised its combined futures and options position in New York and London by 30,726 contracts to 281,713 during the period. 

Apr 15 - U.S. drillers add oil rigs for second week in a row -Baker Hughes
U.S. energy firms this week increased the number of oil rigs operating for a second week in a row with crude futures up more than 40 percent so far this year. Companies added two oil rigs in the week to April 12, bringing the total count to 833, General Electric Co's Baker Hughes energy services firm said in its closely followed report on Friday.

Apr 12 - Russia cashes in as European oil refiners pay for U.S. sanctions
European refiners are paying the price for U.S. oil sanctions on Venezuela and Iran as they scramble to replace the sour crude Washington has blocked from the global market with increasingly expensive Russian oil, trading sources said and data showed. Compounding the impact of sanctions, OPEC members have mainly cut sour crude output as part of their deal with allied producers to boost oil prices while a large, new refinery, designed to run on sour oil, has just started up in Turkey.

Apr 12 - OPEC could raise oil output if prices increase, shortages mount - sources
OPEC could raise oil output from July if Venezuelan and Iranian supply drops further and prices keep rallying, because extending production cuts with Russia and other allies could overtighten the market, sources familiar with the matter said. Venezuelan crude production has dropped below 1 million barrels per day (bpd) because of U.S. sanctions. 

Apr 12 - U.S. super-light oil output rise roils Texas, Oklahoma markets
Growing production of Texas super-light oil - and worries about its quality compared with other types of crude - is slowing down deliveries into the main U.S. storage hub in Oklahoma, draining supply there and adding to a glut in Texas. In the last several months, drillers are producing more oil known as West Texas Light (WTL), a type of crude that differs from what is blended at the Cushing, Oklahoma hub to produce the benchmark U.S. oil grade.

Apr 12 - Venezuela oil output plummets to 870,000 bpd on outages, sanctions - IEA
Global oil supply dropped in March as U.S. sanctions and power outages pushed Venezuela's crude output to a long-term low of 870,000 barrels per day (bpd), the International Energy Agency said on Thursday, even lower than OPEC reported the day before. "The blackouts are an additional challenge for Venezuela's oil sector, already set back by economic collapse, corruption, mismanagement and - more recently - by U.S. sanctions," the Paris-based IEA said in its monthly report.

Apr 12 - U.S. EPA may grant fewer biofuel waivers due to low credit prices - Wheeler
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency could grant fewer waivers exempting small refineries from the country's biofuel policy as lower prices for blending credits have reduced the cost of compliance, the agency's administrator Andrew Wheeler told Reuters on Thursday. The Trump administration's use of such waivers to save the oil industry money has become a lightning rod of controversy for the powerful corn lobby, which claims the exemptions have been over used and threaten demand for corn-based ethanol at a time farmers are already struggling.

Apr 12 - As conflict flares once more, what's at stake for Libya's oil ?
Eastern-based Libyan forces commanded by Khalifa Haftar launched an offensive last week to take control of Tripoli, the capital, plunging the OPEC country into a new round of armed conflict. Haftar's Libyan National Army (LNA) faces fierce resistance from rival military groups, and oil prices have risen above $70 per barrel on fears of new losses to Libyan production. 

Apr 12 - Arrival of Putin's judo partner squeezed Shell out of LNG project: sources
Royal Dutch Shell pulled out of a project to build a Russian liquefied natural gas plant partly because Gazprom suddenly added another partner with links to an ally of President Vladimir Putin, according to five sources. After three years work on the Baltic Coast project, Shell discovered that Gazprom was bringing in a company linked to Arkady Rotenberg, who is on a U.S. sanctions blacklist.

Apr 11 - Venezuela reports collapse in oil supply, tightening global market - OPEC
Venezuela's oil output sank to a new long-term low last month due to U.S. sanctions and blackouts, the country told OPEC, deepening the impact of a global production curb and further tightening supplies. Supply cuts by OPEC and partners led by Russia, plus involuntary reductions in Venezuela and Iran, have helped drive a 32 percent rally in crude prices this year, prompting pressure from U.S. President Donald Trump for the group to ease its market-supporting efforts.

Apr 11 - Trump signs orders targeting states' power to slow energy projects
President Donald Trump signed two executive orders in the heart of the Texas energy hub on Wednesday targeting the power of states to delay natural gas, coal and oil projects as he looks to build support ahead of next year's election. Trump's orders direct his Environmental Protection Agency to change a part of the U.S. clean water law that has allowed states to delay projects on environmental grounds. 

Apr 11 - Climate goals could sink oil demand from mid 2020s - LGIM
Legal and General Investment Management (LGIM), which manages assets worth 1 trillion pounds ($1.3 trillion) worldwide, said oil demand could start to decline from 2025 if countries impose strict policies to curb climate change. The impact of moves to ensure the global rise in temperature remains below 2 degrees could be such that by the early 2040s oil demand would have dropped by around 40 percent from current levels to below 60 million barrels a day, LGIM said in a report published on Thursday.

Apr 11 - U.S. crude stockpiles surge to 17-month high; steep gasoline drawdown - EIA
U.S. crude oil stocks rose more than expected last week to the highest in nearly 17 months as imports climbed, while gasoline inventories posted their steepest drawdown since September 2017, the Energy Information Administration said on Wednesday. Crude inventories  rose 7 million barrels to 456.6 million barrels in the last week, their highest since November 2017, compared with analysts' expectations for an increase of 2.3 million barrels.

Apr 11 - How Trafigura lost $254 million on oil and gas hedges
One of the world's biggest traders, Trafigura, booked a $254 million loss from oil and gas market hedges last year, highlighting the challenges traders face when taking large loans to protect against price swings in illiquid commodities. To be sure, those losses are on paper and could be eliminated or turn into gains in the future if the market turns in Trafigura's favour. 

Apr 11 - Brazil's transfer-of-rights oil area: What's next?
Brazil's government and state-controlled oil company Petroleo Brasileiro SA have settled a long-running dispute about one of the world's most promising offshore oil areas, clearing the way for a blockbuster auction later this year. The national energy council announced on Tuesday that the government would pay Petrobras, as the company is known, $9.058 billion to end their contract dispute regarding the "transfer of rights area" (TOR). 

Apr 11 - Aramco bonds' modest gains suggest demand was inflated - sources
Saudi Aramco's debut $12 billion bonds booked at best modest gains on Wednesday, their first trading day after some $100 billion in orders, suggesting part of the record-breaking demand was inflated, three banking and investment sources said. Aramco chose to only issue $12 billion of debt, as its focus was to obtain favourable pricing to set a benchmark for its future financing activities.

Apr 10 - Aramco sells $12 billion bonds out of record $100 billion demand
Saudi Aramco is set to raise $12 billion with its first international bond issue after receiving more than $100 billion in orders, a record breaking vote of market confidence for the oil giant which has faced investor concerns about government influence over the company. State-owned Aramco's bond issue, split into maturities ranging from three to 30 years, is seen as a gauge of potential investor interest in the Saudi company's eventual initial public offering.

Apr 10 - U.S. shale producers turn to jobs cuts as investor pressures mount
Having slashed spending plans and run out of willing buyers for assets, some U.S. shale producers are turning to workforce cuts as investors step up demands for returns. Pioneer Natural Resources Co, one of the largest producers in the Permian Basin of West Texas and New Mexico, and Laredo Petroleum Inc another Permian producer, this week disclosed plans to shed workers.

Apr 10 - EIA raises forecast for 2019 U.S. crude output growth
U.S. crude oil production is expected to rise by 1.43 million barrels per day (bpd) in 2019 to average 12.39 million bpd, the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) said on Tuesday, up from its previous forecast for a rise of 1.35 million bpd.  Output in 2020 is forecast to rise by 710,000 bpd to 13.10 million bpd, a smaller increase than the EIA previously estimated.

Apr 10 - Talks with China to cut ethanol tariffs 'positive' - U.S. agriculture secretary
U.S. Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue said on Tuesday that talks with China about reducing Beijing's tariff on U.S. ethanol products were "positive," but cautioned the discussions were not over. "There have been conversations with China on reducing that tariff on ethanol, which would obviously be good for our domestic corn industry," he told reporters. "While things look positive, it's never over till it's over with the Chinese."

Apr 10 - India delays May order for Iran oil, awaits clarity on sanctions waiver - sources
Indian refiners are holding back from ordering Iranian oil for loading in May pending clarity on whether Washington will extend a waiver from U.S. sanctions against the OPEC-member, four sources said. In November, U.S. President Donald Trump withdrew from the 2015 Iran nuclear deal and re-imposed broad economic sanctions.

Apr 10 - China to cap 2019 coal imports to help domestic producers
China's government will cap coal imports this year at 2018 levels, four sources with direct knowledge of the matter told Reuters on Tuesday, to support domestic producers. The world's biggest coal consumer imported 281.23 million tonnes of coal in 2018 including thermal coal, coking coal and anthracite.

Apr 10 - U.S. crude exports to Europe falter as WTI-Brent spread tightens
U.S. crude cargoes bound for Europe dropped to the lowest in more than a year in March and will remain low with the narrow spread between U.S. crude and Brent limiting demand, according to trade sources and data from Refinitiv Eikon. Tankers carrying about 265,000 barrels per day (bpd) of U.S. crude are scheduled to arrive in Rotterdam, Fawley, Trieste and other European ports this month, following a record 718,500 bpd that arrived in March, Eikon data showed.

Apr 09 - Russia signals OPEC and allies could raise oil output from June
One of the key Russian officials to foster a supply pact with OPEC, Kirill Dmitriev, signalled on Monday that Russia wanted to raise oil output when it meets with OPEC in June because of improving market conditions and falling stockpiles. Dmitriev, head of Russian sovereign wealth fund RDIF, was the first Russian official to predict a deal with OPEC in 2016 and since then has become a key defender of the pact despite pressure from domestic oil firms to drop the agreement.

Apr 09 - Investors flock to Saudi Aramco's debut international bond
Saudi Aramco has received bids for more than three times the $10 billion it was expected to raise in a debut international bond issue, which is being watched as a gauge of potential investor interest in the oil company's eventual initial public offering. The demand prompted the world's largest oil firm to market the six-part deal - which will price on Tuesday and could see Aramco raise more than $10 billion - with a smaller than expected premium to the Saudi government that owns it.

Apr 09 - China thermal coal imports to fall 10 mln-12 mln tonnes in 2019 - Noble's Echeverri
China's thermal coal imports will decline by between 10 million and 12 million tonnes in 2019, a leading industry analyst said on Tuesday, largely because of rising domestic output in the world's top producer and consumer. China's coal output will increase from the second quarter of 2019, reducing its reliance on overseas supplies, Rodrigo Echeverri, head of hard commodities at trader Noble Group  told an industry conference in Shanghai.

Apr 09 - Venezuela pledges to honor oil commitments to Cuba despite sanctions
Venezuela will "fulfill its commitments" to Cuba despite United States sanctions targeting oil shipments from the South American country to its ideological ally, Foreign Minister Jorge Arreaza said on Monday. Washington on Friday imposed sanctions on 34 vessels owned or operated by state-run oil company Petroleos de Venezuela as well as on two companies and a vessel that have previously delivered oil to Cuba, aiming to choke off a crucial supply of crude to the Communist-run island. 

Apr 09 - Shell enters China's shale oil scene with joint study with Sinopec
Royal Dutch Shell has entered China's shale oil sector, signing an agreement with state-owned Sinopec to study an East China block, part of the nation's early efforts to unlock the potentially massive unconventional resource. China is already in the initial stages of developing its vast shale gas resources, with production last year making up just 6 percent of total gas output after more than a decade of work. 

Apr 09 - Oil traders hail output cuts but wary on economic outlook: Kemp
Hedge fund managers are becoming progressively more bullish on the outlook for crude and gasoline prices, but they are turning increasingly against diesel, notwithstanding the IMO marine fuel deadline at the end of the year. Hedge funds and other money managers were net buyers of 23 million barrels of futures and options linked to crude and refined products in the week to April, according to exchange and regulatory position records.

Apr 09 - Is coal's slump overdone? Australia's resilient exports suggest maybe: Russell
Australian thermal coal prices plummeted last week, dropping to a 10-month low after succumbing to a series of blows including concern over imports by China and a lower contract price with Japan. But while one should always be wary of trying to catch a falling knife, there are some signs that the rapid decline in prices in recent months has moved the market into oversold territory.

Apr 08 - Midwest floods hammer U.S. ethanol industry, push some gasoline prices toward 5-year high
The March floods that punished the U.S. Midwest have roiled the ethanol industry, hammering prices and trapping barrels in the country's interior while the U.S. coasts suffer from shortages of the biofuel. The historic March floods have dealt a series of blows to large swaths of an ethanol industry that was already struggling with high inventories and sluggish domestic demand growth. 

Apr 08 - Iran says reaches understanding with Iraq to develop two oilfields
Iran and Iraq have reached an understanding about developing two oilfields on their mutual border, Iran's oil minister was quoted saying on Sunday, a day after Iranian President Hassan Rouhani called for increased trade between the two countries. The focus of the understanding is the development of the Naft Shahr and Khorramshahr oilfields, Oil Minister Bijan Zanganeh said according to a report on Iran’s oil ministry website on Sunday, without giving any details of the plan.

Apr 08 - U.S. crude output growth could slow as shale revolution loses momentum
After Texas pushed the United States over the last decade to become the world's biggest oil producer last year, the heart of the shale revolution is starting to show fatigue. The volume of crude being pumped out of Texas recently saw its first monthly dip in a year. Oil well productivity in Texas's Permian basin - the country's largest oil field - is falling, and the number of drilling rigs operating in the United States declined for six straight weeks before rebounding this week. 

Apr 08 - U.S. targets Cuba's oil supply from Venezuela in new sanctions
The United States on Friday targeted oil shipments from Venezuela to Cuba in its latest round of sanctions to pressure the government of President Nicolas Maduro, aiming to choke off a crucial supply of crude to the Communist island. The U.S. Treasury imposed sanctions on 34 vessels owned or operated by Venezuelan state-run oil company Petróleos de Venezuela, S.A, or PDVSA, and also on two companies and a vessel that delivered oil to Cuba in February and March.

Apr 08 - Hedge funds raise bullish U.S. crude bets as price climbs
Hedge funds and other money managers raised their bullish wagers on U.S. crude as futures rose more than 4 percent in the latest week, the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) said on Friday. The speculator group raised its combined futures and options position in New York and London by 7,779 contracts to 250,989 during the week ended April 2.

Apr 08 - Saudi Arabia tries to develop counter-leverage with dollar threat: Kemp
Saudi Arabia's threat to sell its oil in currencies other than the dollar if the United States enacts anti-OPEC legislation is an empty one, but it illustrates the extent of tensions between the two governments over oil prices. Senior Saudi officials have discussed a plan to stop invoicing oil in dollars and switch to other currencies if the No Oil Producing and Exporting Cartels Act (NOPEC), recently introduced in Congress, becomes law.

Apr 08 - U.S. drillers add oil rigs for first week in seven - Baker Hughes
U.S. energy firms this week increased the number of oil rigs operating for the first time in seven weeks after oil futures soared nearly 40 percent this year. Companies added 15 oil rigs in the week to April 5, the biggest increase since May, bringing the total count to 831, General Electric Co's Baker Hughes energy services firm said in its closely followed report on Friday.

Apr 05 - Saudi Arabia threatens to ditch dollar oil trades to stop 'NOPEC' - sources
Saudi Arabia is threatening to sell its oil in currencies other than the dollar if Washington passes a bill exposing OPEC members to U.S. antitrust lawsuits, three sources familiar with Saudi energy policy said. They said the option had been discussed internally by senior Saudi energy officials in recent months. 

Apr 05 - Venezuela's PDVSA braces for low output from crucial crude upgraders
Venezuelan state-owned oil company PDVSA expects its crucial crude upgraders to operate well below capacity this month, according to industry sources and documents seen by Reuters, as U.S. sanctions and energy blackouts hit the OPEC nation's oil industry. Venezuela depends on the upgraders, which are mostly operated by joint ventures with foreign companies, to convert the extra-heavy crude oil produced in the Orinoco Belt into exportable grades usable in overseas refineries. Together, they have a capacity of some 700,000 barrels per day.

Apr 05 - Australia coal posts biggest weekly drop in a decade amid weak demand
Australian thermal coal prices this week registered their biggest weekly fall since the financial market turmoil of a decade ago as demand plunged with the end of winter and amid worries over the strength of the global economy. Coal prices for prompt loading at Australia's Newcastle terminal have lost almost 20 percent since last Friday, dropping to $72 per tonne, their lowest since May 2017, and marking the steepest weekly decline since the global financial crisis of 2008/2009.

Apr 05 - Aramco treads carefully on Saudi ties as it markets debut bond
For Saudi Aramco and its advisers, a debut international debt issue that could raise well over $10 billion presents a key challenge - how to forge an identity as a state-owned major while in the same league as the likes of Exxon Mobil and Shell. At stake is the likely multi-million dollar difference in interest payments over coming years between its standing as an independent international corporate and one tied closely to the host kingdom whose oil it ships to global markets.

Apr 05 - South Korea tests U.S. super light oil as Iran waiver uncertainty grows - sources
South Korea has begun testing super-light U.S. oil sold by Anadarko Petroleum Corp as a substitute for Iranian crude while it awaits word from Washington on whether it can keep buying oil from the Middle Eastern nation, sources said. South Korea is one of Iran's biggest Asian customers and was one of eight importers that received waivers to keep buying Iranian oil when the United States re-imposed sanctions in November.

Apr 05 - Value of U.S. oil deals plunges 93 pct in 1st qtr as investors demand higher returns
The value of U.S. oil and gas mergers and acquisitions fell to a 10-year low in the first quarter, according to data released on Thursday, as investors pushed shale producers that have driven a recent merger boom to focus on lifting shareholder returns rather than production. The value of oil and gas deals tumbled plunged 93 percent to $1.6 billion last quarter from a year ago to the lowest in a decade, energy consultancy Drillinginfo said in its quarterly M&A review.

Apr 05 - U.S. LNG to China will increase despite trade tension - Cheniere
Shipments of liquefied natural gas (LNG) from the United States to China will increase over the long term despite ongoing trade tensions, senior executives of Cheniere Energy  the biggest U.S. exporter of the super-chilled fuel, told Reuters. "It's clear that the U.S. LNG trade with China is just beginning because U.S. LNG has just started," Cheniere Vice President Robert Fee told Reuters on the sidelines of the LNG2019 conference in Shanghai on Thursday.

Apr 05 - Opponents of Alaska drilling say it threatens climate, wildlife
Opponents of drilling for oil in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge are lining up in Alaska and in Washington, calling the White House's efforts to open up the land "ecologically unsound." Those against oil development in the ANWR coastal plain say the territory deserves protection from oil rigs, pipelines and roads that crisscross the rest of Alaska’s North Slope.

Apr 04 - U.S. crude stocks build sharply, production hits fresh peak
U.S. crude oil stockpiles soared unexpectedly last week as imports climbed and production edged higher to a new record, the Energy Information Administration said on Wednesday. Refined fuel inventories fell more than expected, with gasoline drawing down for a seventh straight week, as refining rates remained low, the data from the statistical arm of the Department of Energy showed.

Apr 04 - Flooding, refinery outages push gasoline prices higher in U.S. West
Severe flooding in the U.S. Midwest this season has had ripple effects for drivers further west, as washed-out rail lines disrupted ethanol supply, causing spikes in gasoline prices and even forcing some retail stations to shut down. Ethanol producers in flood-ravaged states have had trouble getting their product to markets over the past two weeks, as rail lines have been shut or hampered by rising waters.

Apr 04 - Western Canadian oil inventories rise in March despite curtailments
Western Canadian crude oil storage inventories rose in March, data from energy information provider Genscape showed on Wednesday, as reduced crude by rail volumes offset mandatory oil production cuts imposed by the Alberta government. It was the first monthly increase since the government of Canada's largest crude-producing province introduced curtailments on Jan. 1 2019 and highlights the difficult balancing act Alberta faces as it intervenes in the market.

Apr 04 - U.S. natural gas prices unmoved by colder winter, low inventories: Kemp
U.S. natural gas prices remain mired below $3 per million British thermal units despite a relatively cold winter that has left the volume of gas in storage well below normal for the time of year. Futures prices for natural gas delivered to Henry Hub in June 2019 are just over $2.70 per million BTUs, down from $2.90 in the middle of March, and have remained well below $3 throughout the last two years.


Oil and spot gold may extend gains moderately in Q2 before reversing the uptrend. Palm oil is expected to complete a corrective cycle by approaching a key resistance at 2,398 ringgit again.  Grains and cocoa are bullish, while base metals and the peaking spot palladium look very bearish. Special attention is drawn to dollar index which is poised to soar. To read the full report, click here.

Apr 03 - Three importers cut Iran oil shipments to zero - U.S. envoy
Three of eight importers granted waivers by Washington to buy oil from Iran have now cut their shipments to zero, a U.S. official said on Tuesday, adding that improved global oil market conditions would help reduce Iranian crude exports further. The United States reimposed sanctions on Iran after President Donald Trump last May withdrew the country from a 2015 nuclear deal between Iran and several world powers, accusing it of supporting terrorism and conflicts in Syria and Yemen.

Apr 03 - China's Sinopec dials back oil-purchase strategy after record Q4 loss - sources
China's Sinopec Corp has ended a five-year crude oil purchasing strategy to rein in the speculative derivatives activity of its trading arm Unipec after a record trading loss late last year, four people with direct knowledge of the matter told Reuters. Sinopec, Asia's largest crude oil buyer and its largest refiner, in January abandoned a buying formula used since 2014 to establish performance targets for Unipec and aimed at driving down its crude feedstock costs to a pre-set discount to global oil benchmarks.

Apr 03 - Citing climate differences, Shell walks away from U.S. refining lobby
Royal Dutch Shell Plc on Tuesday became the first major oil and gas company to announce plans to leave a leading U.S. refining lobby due to disagreement on climate policies, citing its support for the goals of the Paris climate agreement. In its first review of its association with 19 key industry groups, Shell said it had found "material misalignment" over climate policy with the American Fuel & Petrochemical Manufacturers (AFPM) and would quit the body in 2020.

Apr 03 - Venezuela oil exports stable in March despite sanctions, blackouts
Venezuela's state-run energy company, PDVSA, kept oil exports near 1 million barrels per day in March despite U.S. sanctions and power outages that crippled its main export terminal, according to PDVSA documents and Refinitiv Eikon data. The OPEC member stabilized exports in March after shipments fell about 40 percent in February from the prior months, in the immediate aftermath of the United States announcing it would impose sanctions on oil sales to choke off the main source of revenue for socialist President Nicolas Maduro.

Apr 03 - Cash flow still weak at U.S. shale firms, stock prices underperform
U.S. shale producers last year again spent more money than they collected, extending a years-long streak of putting oil output above cash flow and investor returns, according to a Reuters analysis of top independent producers. All but seven of 29 of these producers last year spent more on drilling and shareholder payouts than they generated through operations, according to securities filings. 

Apr 03 - Energy secretary says U.S. should debate shrinking the oil reserve
U.S. Energy Secretary Rick Perry said on Tuesday that Congress should consider whether to shrink the government's emergency oil reserve as the boom in domestic oil production has cut reliance on petroleum imports. The Strategic Petroleum Reserve (SPR), which stores crude oil in a series of salt caverns at heavily guarded sites on the Texas and Louisiana coasts, was authorized by Congress after the Arab oil embargo of the 1970s sparked a U.S. fuel crisis.

Apr 03 - Exxon offers first glimpse of results from expanded trading unit
Exxon Mobil Corp has offered a glimpse of the scale of its nascent energy trading operation, disclosing operating profit and losses of about $230 million during each quarter last year, the first time it has revealed the figures. The world's largest publicly traded oil producer last year launched a major push into energy trading, hiring veterans from Glencore, Noble Group, BP Plc and elsewhere in the United States, Europe and Asia. It also recruited market analysts and specialists with experience in crude, natural gas, gas-liquids and gasoline.

Apr 02 - OPEC oil output hits four-year low on Saudi cuts, Venezuela blackouts 

OPEC oil supply sank to a four-year low in March, a Reuters survey found, as top exporter Saudi Arabia over-delivered on the group's supply-cutting pact while Venezuelan output fell further due to sanctions and power outages. The 14-member Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries pumped 30.40 million barrels per day (bpd) last month, the survey showed on Monday, down 280,000 bpd from February and the lowest OPEC total since 2015.

Apr 02 - Saudi Arabia may keep May crude prices little changed
Top oil exporter Saudi Arabia is expected to keep prices of various grades of crude it sells to Asia little changed in May from the previous month, trade sources said on Tuesday. State-owned Saudi Aramco may cut the official selling price (OSP) for its flagship Arab Light crude by 5 cents a barrel for May, according to the median of responses of five refining sources. 

Apr 02 - Aramco's $10 bln-plus bond plan shows profits put top earner Apple in shade
Saudi Aramco, the world's biggest oil producer, made core earnings of $224 billion last year, almost three times as much as Apple, figures from the state-owned company showed on Monday ahead of its debut international bond issue. Previously reluctant to disclose its financials, Aramco had to reveal them in order to obtain a public rating and start issuing international bonds.

Apr 02 - Alberta crude inventories rise despite production curtailments
The amount of oil in storage in Alberta rose in February, monthly data shows, despite moves by the government of Canada's largest crude-producing province to reduce inventories by imposing curtailments on production. The reason is a sharp decline in crude by rail shipments, analysts say. A significantly narrower discount on Canadian crude compared with U.S. barrels as a result of the curtailments has made rail shipments uneconomic.

Apr 02 - Hedge funds bullish on slowing oil output growth: Kemp
Hedge funds are becoming increasingly bullish on oil prices amid signs of slowing production growth as a result of output cuts by Saudi Arabia and a reduction in U.S. shale drilling. Hedge funds and other money managers bought 37 million barrels of futures and options in the six most important contracts linked to petroleum prices in the week to March 26.

Apr 02 - Oil-rich sovereign funds look to renewables alongside fossil fuels
Sovereign wealth funds from oil-rich countries in the Middle East are moving to diversify into renewable energy, pushed by regulators and pledges on climate change, but are stopping short of following Norway in shedding some oil and gas investments. Total sovereign wealth fund investments within the oil and gas industry have dwarfed those within renewable energy in the past decade.

Apr 01 - Iranian fuel oil cargo sits off Malaysia as U.S. urges sanctions compliance
A tanker of Iranian fuel oil was sitting offshore Malaysia, ship tracking data on Refinitiv Eikon showed, as a top U.S. sanctions official visiting Singapore on Friday urged local governments to comply with oil trading restrictions on Iran. The U.S. government reintroduced sanctions against Iran's oil industry in November. While it still allows some buyers limited purchases of Iranian crude oil, petroleum products have not received official sanctions waivers. 

Apr 01 - Saudi Aramco gets first credit ratings ahead of bond debut
Saudi Aramco, the world's top oil producer, has been rated A+ by Fitch and A1 by Moody's in its first-ever credit ratings, ahead of the state oil giant's first global bond sale and following 2018 earnings that dwarfed those of international oil majors. Aramco will start meeting international bond investors this week for its debut in the international capital markets, opening its books to investor scrutiny for the first time. Given Aramco is fully state owned, its ratings are in line with the credit rating of Saudi Arabia. 

Apr 01 - Trump tries fresh approach with long-delayed Keystone XL pipeline
U.S. President Donald Trump on Friday signed a new permission for TransCanada Corp to build the long-delayed Keystone pipeline for imports of Canadian oil, replacing his previous permits in a fresh attempt to get around the blocking of the $8 billion project by a court in Montana. In granting the permission in an executive order, Trump revoked a previous permit for the pipeline issued in March 2017 and an executive order approving the project he issued two days after taking office in January that year.

Apr 01 - Commodity prices, investment poised to extend upswing
A rebound in commodities prices and investment is poised to extend in coming months as the sector gets its traditional boost during the final stages of the global economic cycle along with other drivers. While some investors worry about a possible recession, commodities are due to benefit from an expected U.S.-China trade deal, tightening oil supply and potential short-covering in beaten-down U.S. grain futures.

Apr 01 - Trump and Saudi Arabia at odds over oil prices: Kemp
U.S. President Donald Trump and the Saudi government have closely aligned views on most issues but they disagree significantly on the desirable level for oil prices, which could become a source of volatility in 2019/2020. In keeping with his iconoclastic approach to governing, Trump has kept up a public commentary on oil prices and the role of Saudi-led OPEC in messages on Twitter as well as television interviews.

Apr 01 - Cutbacks continue at two oil refineries over Texas petrochemical disaster
Lyondell Basell Industries may keep production cuts at its 263,776 barrel-per-day (bpd) Houston refinery for a week because of shipping disruptions in a key oil port from a chemical spill, Gulf Coast market sources said on Friday. Royal Shell Plc plans to increase production on April 3 at its 275,000 bpd joint-venture Deer Park, Texas, refinery, which was cut because of the shipping shutdown, the sources said.

Apr 01 - U.S. crude output eases from record to 11.9 mln bpd in Jan - EIA
U.S. crude oil production edged lower in January to 11.87 million barrels per day, from a revised record 11.96 million bpd in December, the U.S. Energy Information Administration said in a monthly report on Friday. Production in Texas fell by 64,000 bpd in the month and in North Dakota output rose by 9,000 bpd. Meanwhile, production in the federal waters of the Gulf of Mexico was largely unchanged, according to the report.

Apr 01 - Hedge funds boost bullish U.S. crude, Brent bets -CFTC
Hedge funds and money managers raised bullish wagers on U.S. crude to the highest in more than five months, the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) said on Friday, as prices climbed on tightening global supplies. The speculator group increased its combined futures and options net long position in New York and London by 29,103 contracts to 243,209 in the week to March 26.

Apr 01 - U.S. drillers cut most oil rigs in a quarter in three years - Baker Hughes
U.S. energy firms this week reduced the number of oil rigs operating to their lowest in nearly a year, cutting the most rigs in a quarter in three years despite a 30 percent hike in crude prices so far in 2019. Drillers cut eight oil rigs in the week to March 29, bringing the total count down to 816, the lowest since April 2018, General Electric Co's Baker Hughes energy services firm said in its closely followed report on Friday.