MARKET WATCH: NYMEX crude oil futures drop below $100/bbl

Crude oil futures dropped by more than $1/bbl on the New York market and dipped by more than $2/bbl on the London market on Apr. 1 following the release of a report that Chinese manufacturing was slowing, which triggered concerns about world oil demand, analysts said.

The HSBC China Manufacturing Purchasing Managers Index (PMI) fell to 48 for March compared with 48.5 for February. It was the third consecutive monthly drop, and HSBC China PMI’s lowest number since July 2013.

The latest HSBC China PMI was lower than an official one released by China’s statistics authority, which reported 50.3 for March compared with 50.2 for February. A reading above 50 indicates accelerated manufacturing.

Meanwhile, Brent crude oil prices continued to slump during early Apr. 2 trading upon reports that Libyan rebels could end a blockade of eastern Libyan oil terminals within days. The resumption of exports from those terminals could allow more oil to reach world markets.

US light, sweet crude prices dropped below $100/bbl Apr. 1 in anticipation of a weekly government report that showed a decline in the oil inventory. Analysts had forecast an increase in oil supplies, saying that seasonal refinery maintenance continues to reduce demand.

But the US Energy Information Administration said crude oil inventories, excluding those in the Strategic Petroleum Reserve, decreased by 2.4 million bbl for the week ended Mar. 28 compared with the previous week. This was the first estimated decline in the crude inventory in 11 weeks.

At 380.1 million bbl, US crude oil inventories are in the upper half of the average range for this time of year, EIA said in its weekly petroleum report.

Analysts polled by the Wall Street Journal said they expected the inventory would rise by 700,000 bbl for the week ended Mar. 28 although estimates varied widely because of uncertainty about the effect of the Houston Ship Channel being closed for during Mar. 22-25 (OGJ Online, Mar. 24, 2014).

The ship channel was closed temporary for cleanup efforts followed a fuel oil spill from a barge.

The American Petroleum Institute estimated that crude oil supplies fell by 5.8 million bbl. EIA’s estimated crude inventories as of Mar. 21 were at the highest level since November 2013.

Gasoline inventories drop

Total motor gasoline inventories decreased by 1.6 million bbl for the week ended Mar. 28, which EIA said was below the lower limit of the average range. Both finished gasoline inventories and blending components inventories decreased.

Distillate fuel inventories increased by 600,000 bbl last week but are at the lower limit of the average range for this time of year. Propane-propylene inventories increased 900,000 bbl last week and are near the lower limit of the average range.

Refinery inputs averaged over 15.3 million b/d during the week ended Mar. 28, which was 223,000 b/d more than the previous week’s average. Refineries operated at 87.7% of capacity last week.

Gasoline production increased, averaging over 9 million b/d. Distillate fuel production increased last week, averaging 4.8 million b/d.

Crude oil imports averaged over 6.8 million b/d last week, down by 786,000 b/d from the previous week. Over the last 4 weeks, crude oil imports averaged about 7.3 million b/d, 6.1% below the same 4-week period last year.

Total motor gasoline imports, including finished gasoline and gasoline blending components, averaged 533,000 b/d while distillate fuel imports averaged 240,000 b/d for the week ended Mar. 28.

Energy prices

The New York Mercantile Exchange May crude oil contract was down $1.84 on Apr. 1, closing at $99.74/bbl. The June contract dropped $1.77/bbl for a settlement of $99.05/bbl.

The May natural gas contract declined 9.5¢ to a rounded $4.28/MMbtu. On the cash gas market, the Henry Hub price for Apr. 1 was unavailable.

Heating oil for May delivery dropped 4.2¢ to reach a rounded $2.89/gal. Reformulated gasoline stock for oxygenate blending for May delivery was down 4.8¢ to a rounded $2.87/gal.

In London, the May ICE contract for Brent crude delivery declined $2.14/bbl, closing at $105.62/bbl. The June contract dropped $2.09 to $105.56/bbl. The ICE gas oil contract for April declined $1 to $893/tonne.

The Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries reported its basket of 12 benchmark crudes was $103.25/bbl on Apr. 1, down 83¢.

Contact Paula Dittrick at paulad@ogjonline.com.

Related Articles

EPA approves Magellan’s Corpus Christi splitter project

12/12/2014 The US Environmental Protection Agency has issued a final greenhouse gas prevention of significant deterioration construction permit to Magellan Pr...

Keyera to take majority interest in Alberta gas plant

12/12/2014 Keyera Corp., Calgary, will pay $65 million (Can.) to buy a 70.79% ownership interest in the Ricinus deep-cut gas plant in west-central Alberta.

PBF Energy, PBF Logistics make management changes

12/12/2014 Matthew Lucey, currently executive vice-president of PBF Energy Inc., will succeed Michael Gayda as the company’s president. Todd O’Malley, current...

TAEP: TPI still peaking, but ‘contraction unavoidable’ as oil prices fall

12/12/2014 The Texas Petro Index (TPI), a composite index based on a comprehensive group of upstream economic indicators released by the Texas Alliance of Ene...

MARKET WATCH: NYMEX crude oil price extends slump

12/12/2014 Crude oil prices extended their slump on the New York market with a Dec. 11 settlement of less than $60/bbl for January, and prices continued downw...

US needs more data before ending crude export ban, House panel told

12/11/2014 Much more environmental impact information is needed before the US can reasonably remove crude oil export limits, a witness told a House Energy and...

BOEM raises offshore oil spill liability limit to $134 million

12/11/2014 The US Bureau of Ocean Energy Management increased the liability limit for oil-spill related damages from offshore operations to $134 million from ...

Rosneft, Essar sign terms of oil supply agreement

12/11/2014 OAO Rosneft and Essar Energy PLC have signed key terms of an oil supply agreement in New Delhi. Rosneft said shipments to India may begin in 2015.

Barton introduces bill to remove US crude export limits

12/11/2014

US Rep. Joe Barton (R-Tex.) introduced legislation that would remove US crude oil export limits that have been in place for nearly 40 years.

White Papers

AVEVA NET Accesses and Manages the Digital Asset

Global demand for new process plants, power plants and infrastructure is increasing steadily with the ...
Sponsored by

AVEVA’s Approach for the Digital Asset

To meet the requirements for leaner project execution and more efficient operations while transferring...
Sponsored by

Diversification - the technology aspects

In tough times, businesses seek to diversify into adjacent markets or to apply their skills and resour...
Sponsored by

Engineering & Design for Lean Construction

Modern marketing rhetoric claims that, in order to cut out expensive costs and reduce risks during the...
Sponsored by

Object Lessons - Why control of engineering design at the object level is essential for efficient project execution

Whatever the task, there is usually only one way to do it right and many more to do it wrong. In the c...
Sponsored by

Plant Design for Lean Construction - at your fingertips

One area which can provide improvements to the adoption of Lean principles is the application of mobil...
Sponsored by

How to Keep Your Mud System Vibrator Hose from Getting Hammered to Death

To prevent the vibrating hoses on your oilfield mud circulation systems from failing, you must examine...
Sponsored by

Duty of Care

Good corporate social responsibility means implementing effective workplace health and safety measures...
Sponsored by

Available Webcasts


On Demand

Optimizing your asset management practices to mitigate the effects of a down market

Thu, Dec 11, 2014

The oil and gas market is in constant flux, and as the price of BOE (Barrel of Oil Equivalent) goes down it is increasingly important to optimize your asset management strategy to stay afloat.  Attend this webinar to learn how developing a solid asset management plan can help your company mitigate costs in any market.

register:WEBCAST


Parylene Conformal Coatings for the Oil & Gas Industry

Thu, Nov 20, 2014

In this concise 30-minute webinar, participants have an opportunity to learn more about how Parylene coatings are applied, their features, and the value they add to devices and components.

register:WEBCAST


Utilizing Predictive Analytics to Optimize Productivity in Oil & Gas Operations

Tue, Nov 18, 2014

Join IBM on Tuesday, November 18 @ 1pm CST to explore how Predictive Analytics can help your organization maximize productivity, operational performance & associated processes to drive enterprise wide productivity and profitability.

register:WEBCAST


US HYDROCARBON EXPORTS Part 3 — LNG

Fri, Nov 14, 2014

US LNG Exports, the third in a trilogy of webcasts focusing on the broad topic of US Hydrocarbon Exports.

A discussion of the problems and potential for the export of US-produced liquefied natural gas.

These and other topics will be discussed, with the latest thoughts on U.S. LNG export policy.

register:WEBCAST


Careers at TOTAL

Careers at TOTAL - Videos

More than 600 job openings are now online, watch videos and learn more!

 

Click Here to Watch

Other Oil & Gas Industry Jobs

Search More Job Listings >>
Stay Connected