Russian crude imports to China have risen in early 2017 as the country's independent, or teapot, refiners have expanded their diet to include the Urals grade, trade sources said on Tuesday. Russia could expand its market share in China, the second-largest oil consumer, this year after a drop in Brent prices relative to Middle East crude benchmark Dubai opened the arbitrage for Russian Urals to head east. Russia topped Saudi Arabia as the biggest crude seller to China in 2016. Shandong Wonfull Petrochemical Group bought about 2 million barrels of Urals crude for delivery in February and May, two sources with knowledge of the matter told Reuters. click Read More below for more of the story
National Average Price for Regular – Current: $2.817; Month Ago: $2.658; Year Ago: $2.367.
National Average Price for Diesel – Current: $3.074; Month Ago: $2.972; Year Ago: $2.522.
Oil prices stabilized on Monday after one of the most bearish weeks in months, propped up by OPEC comments signaling the group and other producers may take further action to restore market balance in the long term. Oil production platforms in the Gulf of Mexico started returning to service after Hurricane Nate had forced the shutdown of more than 90 percent of crude output in the area. The prospective restarts kept price gains in check. “Oil is having trouble to find direction. Mixed signals keep investors busy changing their minds,” said Hans van Cleef, senior energy economist at ABN Amro. Click Read More below for more of the story.
Brent crude breached $80 a barrel on Monday — its highest level since November 2014 — on the back of a tightening oil market and OPEC leaders signaling they won't be immediately boosting output. Oil futures in London jumped 2.7 percent while some traders predicted the risk of prices exceeding $100 a barrel. J.P. Morgan wrote in its latest market outlook that "a spike to $90 per barrel is likely" in the coming months thanks to U.S. sanctions on Iranian oil exports, which have fallen dramatically in recent months as importers brace for the impending penalties. The bank forecasts Brent and WTI prices to average $85 and $76 per barrel, respectively, in the next six months.