MARKET WATCH: NYMEX crude dips pending official US inventory report

Light, sweet crude futures fell slightly Feb. 13 on the New York Mercantile Exchange to remain above $59/bbl while Brent crude oil gained but remained under $63/bbl in London.

Light, sweet crude futures fell slightly Feb. 13 on the New York Mercantile Exchange to remain above $59/bbl while Brent crude oil gained but remained under $63/bbl in London.

Oil investors on Feb. 14 awaited the weekly US government report on US production and inventory levels for crude and products. Analysts said expectations for rising US oil production was limiting any major gain in oil prices despite a weakening dollar.

Crude oil is traded worldwide in US dollars so a weakening dollar makes oil less expensive for buyers starting with other currencies. The Wall Street Journal Dollar Index, which tracks the dollar against a basket of other currencies, fell 0.15% to 83.61 on Feb. 12.

The American Petroleum Institute on Feb. 13 estimated crude supplies increased by 3.9 million bbl for the week ended Feb. 9 while gasoline supplies rose by 4.6 million bbl.

Meanwhile, the US Energy Information Administration was scheduled to release its weekly inventory report on Feb. 14. Analysts and traders surveyed by the Wall Street Journal expected EIA to report that oil supplies increased by 2.6 million bbl last week.

The International Energy Agency on Feb. 13 said crude production growth from countries outside the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries—mainly US unconventional production—likely will surpass global demand growth for oil this year, putting downward pressure on oil prices (OGJ Online, Feb. 13, 2018).

Energy prices

The March light, sweet crude contract on the New York Mercantile Exchange dropped 10¢ on Feb. 13 to settle at $59.19/bbl. The April contract fell 5¢ to $59.03/bbl.

The NYMEX natural gas price for March settled at a rounded $2.59/MMbtu, up 4¢. The Henry Hub cash gas price rose 1¢ to $2.57/MMbtu.

Ultralow-sulfur diesel for March declined by less than a penny to remain at a rounded $1.84/gal. The NYMEX reformulated gasoline blendstock for March fell less than 1¢ to a rounded $1.68/gal.

Brent on London’s ICE for April gained 13¢ to $62.72/bbl. The May contract was up 11¢ to $62.44/bbl. The gas oil contract for March was $545.75/tonne, down $10.

OPEC’s basket of crudes was $60.52/bbl on Feb. 13 down 52¢.

Contact Paula Dittrick at paulad@ogjonline.com.

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