Tag Archives: Brent Crude

Oil Prices Rise on Increased Demand

The price of crude oil futures climbed a bit on Monday as demand from Asia and the US edged up as well.

Brent crude surged by 2 cents a barrel to $65.39 at 03:12 GMT. US crude showed a steeper climb, leaving it a bit below Brent crude, at $59.86 per barrel.

Energy Aspects, a London-based publication which discusses  the energy markets, commented on the increased price of oil:

“Global oil demand continues to surprise to the upside, with April data showing no signs of slowdown despite a pick-up in prices.”

Japan’s Ministry of Finance said that crude oil imports to Japan increased by 9.1 percent to 3.62 million barrels per day in April, compared to one year earlier. China hit a new record of crude imports, reaching 7.4 million barrels per day in April. That surge is despite China’s slowing economy which is offset by vigorous car sales.

“We expect Chinese imports to be high in H2 15, potentially averaging 7.5 million barrels per day. This is due to the start-up of 39 mb (million barrels) of commercial storage, five SPR (strategic petroleum reserve) sites and linefill for Kunming refinery—buying for which is ongoing we believe, even though the refinery won’t start up till early 2016,” Energy Aspects said.

On the other side of the globe the United States is now entering its peak season for driving with the Memorial Day weekend just coming to an end. According to the American Automobile Association, road travel in the US is expected to reach a ten-year high over the weekend, tightly correlated with higher oil use.

Oil Prices Climb to $99 Range

The price of crude oil approached just below $99 a barrel on Wednesday in Asia due to investor’s reaction to a surge in US oil supply inventories combined with slower than hoped-for economic growth.

The price of benchmark crude, to be delivered in March, climbed by 15 cents to $98.63 per barrel in Singapore in the late afternoon, just in time to make the electronic trading deadline on the New York Mercantile Exchange. By the end of the trading day the contract’s price fell by 30 cents to rest at $98.48 on Tuesday.

Brent crude also rose by 19 cents per barrel, to settle at $111.17 on the ICE Futures Exchange in London.

According to the American Petroleum Institute, crude inventories went up by 2.1 million barrels last week. In a survey conducted by Platts, the energy information section of McGraw-Hill Companies, of analysts’ predictions, they found that there had been a prediction of an increase in the inventories of 3.0 million barrels.

"U.S. economic releases tilted toward the bearish side, and that these figures followed last Friday's negative GDP guidance conjured up images of some disappointing employment data," energy consultant Ritterbusch and Associates said in a report. "A difficult, choppy trading environment could be sustained well into February."