MARKET WATCH: Libyan news contributes to lower crude oil futures prices

An agreement between the Libyan government and rebels to reopen two oil ports in eastern Libya contributed to a slip in crude oil prices in July 2 trading in both New York and London markets although analysts noted that similar agreements have fallen through in recent months.

The two ports, Es Sider and Ras Lanuf, handle nearly half of Libya’s normal oil exports that were disrupted by strikes and armed occupations. A resumption of Libyan oil exports could ease concerns about supply disruptions from Iraq.

Crude oil prices are apt be influenced only modestly by ongoing tensions in Iraq, said Hans van Cleef, senior energy economist with ABN AMRO in Amsterdam. He noted the insurgency is concentrated in northwest Iraq and has not reached southern Iraqi oil production.

“At present, oil exports are coming from Basra in the southeast of Iraq on the Persian Gulf. Since the unrest increased in mid-June, oil production and exports have continued unabated in the south of Iraq,” van Cleef said.

“ABN AMRO expects that neighboring oil producers…and the international community (especially the US) will not simply stand idly by and allow” insurgents to seize control of Baghdad and key oil fields, he said. “Moreover, the market is aware that if oil production in Iraq is reduced, the shortfall can, in principle, be offset by additional oil production” from Saudi Arabia and others.

ABN AMRO said its basic scenario for the next 2 years envisages stable or slightly lower oil prices, assuming sufficient oil supplies worldwide.

Meanwhile, US natural gas futures and cash prices fell during July 2 trading awaiting a weekly gas storage report.

The US Energy Information Administration estimated working gas in storage at 1.9 tcf as of June 27, and that was a net increase of 100 bcf from the previous week. Stocks were 666 bcf less than last year at this time and 790 bcf below the 5-year average of 2.7 tcf.

Analysts and traders surveyed by the Wall Street Journal had expected storage levels to rise by 101 bcf.

Underground gas storage in the Lower 48 ended the winter at 11-year lows.

Meanwhile, the National Hurricane Center said Tropical Storm Arthur strengthened to a hurricane early July 3 and threatened the eastern coastal states for the upcoming Independence Day holiday in the US.

Energy prices

The New York Mercantile Exchange August crude oil contract fell 86¢ to $104.48/bbl on July 2. The September contract dropped 83¢ to $103.91/bbl. NYMEX was scheduled to be closed on July 4.

The natural gas contract for August declined 9.8¢ to a rounded $4.36/MMbtu, marking the lowest front-month closing price in weeks. On the US cash market, gas at Henry Hub, La., was $4.39/MMbtu, down 4¢.

Heating oil for August delivery was down 3.2¢ to a rounded $2.95/gal. Reformulated gasoline stock for oxygenate blending for August delivery dropped 1.26¢ to a rounded $3.02/gal.

The August ICE contract for Brent crude delivery declined $1.05, closing at $111.24/bbl. The September contract dropped 90¢ to $111.20/bbl. The ICE gas oil contract for July fell $5.25 to $908.75/tonne.

The Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries basket of 12 benchmark crudes for July 2 was $108.35/bbl, down 33¢ from July 1.

Contact Paula Dittrick at

Related Articles

WAFWA: Aerial survey finds lesser prairie chicken population grew

07/06/2015 A recent range-wide aerial survey found the lesser prairie chicken population rose 25% from 2014 to 2015, the Western Association of Fish & Wil...

Buru awarded onshore Canning licenses

07/06/2015 Buru Energy Ltd., Perth, and Mitsubish Corp. have been granted two production licenses for Ungani oil field in the onshore Canning basin of Western...

Cenovus sells royalty business for $3.3 billion

07/06/2015 Cenovus Energy Inc., Calgary, inked an agreement to sell its wholly owned subsidiary Heritage Royalty LP to Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan for gros...

CERI: Energy, operational efficiencies possible in Canadian oil, gas

07/06/2015 Measures can be taken by operators in the expanding resource-intensive Canadian oil and gas sector to improve both energy efficiency and operationa...

AGL Energy to scale back upstream gas operations


Gas retailer AGL Energy Ltd., Sydney, says it will exit the oil business and massively scaling back its upstream gas operations.

Macondo settlement seen ‘positive’ for BP

07/06/2015 BP Exploration & Production Inc.’s recent agreement to settle federal and state claims related to the 2010 Macondo blowout and spill improves t...

Emerging producers offered guidelines for governance

07/06/2015 Like most worthy endeavors, governing oil and gas activity at the national level is easier said than done-especially where oil and gas never before...

Linn Energy, Quantum complete AcqCo deal

07/06/2015 Linn Energy LLC, affiliate LinnCo LLC, and Quantum Energy Partners have signed definitive agreements to fund the acquisition and development of oil...

MARKET WATCH: NYMEX oil prices fall on rise in US rig count

07/06/2015 US light, sweet crude oil prices edged down going into the July 4 holiday weekend on the New York market after Baker Hughes Inc. reported July 2 th...
White Papers

Definitive Guide to Cybersecurity for the Oil & Gas Industry

In the Oil and Gas industry, there is no single adversary and no single threat to the information tech...

UAS Integration for Infrastructure: More than Just Flying

Oil and gas companies recognize the benefits that the use of drones or unmanned aerial systems (UAS) c...

Solutions to Financial Distress Resulting from a Weak Oil and Gas Price Environment

The oil and gas industry is in the midst of a prolonged worldwide downturn in commodity prices. While ...
Sponsored by

2015 Global Engineering Information Management Solutions Competitive Strategy Innovation and Leadership Award

The Frost & Sullivan Best Practices Awards recognise companies in a variety of regional and global...
Sponsored by

Three Tips to Improve Safety in the Oil Field

Working oil fields will always be tough work with inherent risks. There’s no getting around that. Ther...
Sponsored by

Pipeline Integrity: Best Practices to Prevent, Detect, and Mitigate Commodity Releases

Commodity releases can have catastrophic consequences, so ensuring pipeline integrity is crucial for p...
Sponsored by

AVEVA’s Digital Asset Approach - Defining a new era of collaboration in capital projects and asset operations

There is constant, intensive change in the capital projects and asset life cycle management. New chall...
Sponsored by

Transforming the Oil and Gas Industry with EPPM

With budgets in the billions, timelines spanning years, and life cycles extending over decades, oil an...
Sponsored by
Available Webcasts

Operating a Sustainable Oil & Gas Supply Chain in North America

When Tue, Oct 20, 2015

Short lead times and unpredictable conditions in the Oil & Gas industry can create costly challenges in supply chains. By implementing a LEAN culture of continuous improvement you can eliminate waste, increase productivity and gain end-to-end visibility leading to a sustainable and well-oiled supply chain.

Please join us for this webcast sponsored by Ryder System, Inc.


On Demand

Leveraging technology to improve safety & reliability

Tue, Sep 22, 2015

Attend this informative webinar to learn more about how to leverage technology to meet the new OSHA standards and protect your employees from the hazards of arc flash explosions.


The Resilient Oilfield in the Internet of Things World

Tue, Sep 22, 2015

As we hear about the hype surrounding the Internet of Things, the oil and gas industry is questioning what is different than what is already being done. What is new?  Using sensors and connecting devices is nothing new to our mode of business and in many ways the industry exemplifies many principles of an industrial internet of things. How does the Internet of Things impact the oil and gas industry?

Prolific instrumentation and automation digitized the industry and has changed the approach to business models calling for a systems led approach.  Resilient Systems have the ability to adapt to changing circumstances while maintaining their central purpose.  A resilient system, such as Maximo, allows an asset intensive organization to leverage connected devices by merging real-time asset information with other critical asset information and using that information to create a more agile organization.  

Join this webcast, sponsored by IBM, to learn how about Internet of Things capabilities and resilient systems are impacting the landscape of the oil and gas industry.


Taking the Headache out of Fuel License and Exemption Certificates: How to Ensure Compliance

Tue, Aug 25, 2015

This webinar, brought to you by Avalara, will detail the challenges of tax document management, as well as recommend solutions for fuel suppliers. You will learn:

-    Why it’s critical to track business partner licenses and exemption documents
-    The four key business challenges of ensuring tax compliance through document management
-    Best practice business processes to minimize exposure to tax errors


Emerson Micro Motion Videos

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