MARKET WATCH: NYMEX crude oil jumps more than $1/bbl

Light, sweet crude prices on the New York market closed slightly more than $1/bbl higher Feb. 22 after the US Energy Information Administration reported crude oil supplies, excluding the Strategic Petroleum Reserve, fell by 1.6 million bbl last week.

Light, sweet crude prices on the New York market closed slightly more than $1/bbl higher Feb. 22 after the US Energy Information Administration reported crude oil supplies, excluding the Strategic Petroleum Reserve, fell by 1.6 million bbl last week.

It was the first time the US oil inventory had declined in 4 weeks. The US exported more than 2 million b/d for the week ended Feb. 16, approaching a record set in October 2017.

Meanwhile, the Petroleum Status Report showed US oil production edged down by 1,000 b/d to 10.27 million b/d for the week ended Feb. 16 from the previous week. Alaska’s production fell by 11,000 b/d to 508,000 b/d.

Alaska’s decline offset US production growth elsewhere. Production across the Lower 48 increased by 10,000 b/d to 9.762 million b/d for the week ended Feb. 16.

Analysts said prices had recovered somewhat during the last week after Saudi Arabia officials expressed support for production-cut targets through Dec. 31 set by the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries and some non-OPEC producers, including Russia.

OPEC and 10 non-OPEC producers agreed in late 2016 to reduce crude output by 1.8 million b/d to support oil prices. Crude prices gained more than 50% during the second half of 2017 and Brent reached $70/bbl in January.

Energy prices

The April light, sweet crude contract on the New York Mercantile Exchange rose $1.09 on Feb. 22 to settle at $62.77/bbl. The May contract gained $1.08 to $62.80/bbl.

The NYMEX natural gas price for March fell 2¢ to a rounded $2.63/MMbtu. The Henry Hub cash gas price was down 5¢ to $2.60/MMbtu on Feb. 22.

Ultralow-sulfur diesel for March increased by 2¢ to a rounded $1.95/gal. The NYMEX reformulated gasoline blendstock for March edged up by less than a penny to remain at a rounded $1.76/gal.

Brent crude oil for April settled 97¢ higher to $66.39/bbl on London’s International Commodity Exchange. The May contract was up 96¢ to $66.11/bbl. The gas oil contract for March was $585/tonne, up $9.25.

OPEC’s basket of crudes was $63.08/bbl on Feb. 22, up 58¢.

Contact Paula Dittrick at paulad@ogjonline.com.

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