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Oil Prices

Weak Oil Threatens US Export of LNG

Plunging global oil prices may turn hopes for cheap liquefied natural gas supplies from the United States into a costly disappointment for Asian buyers who have already invested billions of dollars in long-term contracts. The 26 percent price slide since June to $85 a barrel exposes cracks in the assumption by utilities and industrial companies from Japan to India that cheap U.S. LNG would muscle into high-value Asian energy markets from 2016. Oil prices form the backbone of LNG trade to Asia, because exporters outside the United States typically tie 25-year supply deals to crude oil prices. If prices continue to fall, these suppliers from Qatar to Australia will regain their edge over upstart U.S. producers. "From the buyer's view, $80 oil makes oil-linked supplies less expensive ... it makes U.S. LNG relatively less attractive for buyers," said one industry source with a commercial focus on North American projects. When Asian buyers signed for U.S. supply deals, the discount to rival oil-linked LNG supply was around $1.90 per mmBtu, but now that could be as low as 90 cents, and an oil price of $80 a barrel effectively results in a dead heat. Asian buyers such as Korea Gas Corp., Tokyo Electric and India's Gail now face the potential for a glut of increasingly cheap oil-linked LNG. Projects Suffer


Offshore Recovery Stalled For Now

As crude oil prices reach Gulf War highs and recent memories of historic low crude prices fade, capital spending on finding and developing new oil reserves continue to play catch up. "The recent oil-price crisis set back non-OPEC output growth for at least a year," a recent report released by Deutsche Banc Alex. Brown states, adding, "While currently high oil prices should spur investment, the extensive 16-month price slide should delay any significant output response from non-OPEC producers


China Shipbuilders may Merge to Stay Afloat

Picture by China COSCO Container Shipping

 The China's four state-run shipping-related companies  are reportedly in the initial phases of combining units in order to beef up the national shipbuilding industry, says local media.   The chances of mergers between China Ocean Shipping, China Shipping Container Lines, Sino Trans & CSC Holdings and China Merchants Group  has improved as they now suffer in a lackluster business climate, the Chinese-language Securities Daily reports.  


EIA: Would More Crude Oil Help?

Yesterday (April 27), the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) and the U.S.-Saudi Arabian Business Council co-hosted a conference on “U.S.-Saudi Relations and Global Energy Security.” At this conference, as he has stated recently in other venues, the Saudi Arabian Minister of Petroleum and Mineral Resources, Ali al-Naimi, stated that, “There is no general shortage of crude oil in today's market -- supplies are readily available


Venezuela's Oil Falls to $42.44

Image for Venezuelas oil

  Venezuela's petroleum export basket dropped to $42.44 per barrel this week from $47.05 last week to reach a 5-1/2-year low, the Petroleum Ministry said on Friday. The South American OPEC member's basket, which includes crude oil and refined products, trades at a discount to other benchmarks because of its higher content of heavy oil. Venezuelan oil prices averaged $88.42 last year, down from $98.08 in 2013.


Big Oil Profits Expected To Fly High

The near record oil prices have left U.S. oil majors as the envy of industry during the third quarter reporting period, according to many industry analysts. "This is clearly a sector that investors shouldn't worry about having disappointing earnings surprises," said one. "The question is not whether they will beat consensus estimates, but by how much they'll beat estimates," said another. Such expectations from analysts and investors come as crude oil prices in the third-quarter hit


Oilfield Stocks Take A Hit As Crude Dips Below $30

Profit-taking hit oilfield service and drilling stocks on Monday as U.S. crude oil prices shed over a dollar to dip below $30 a barrel for the first time since February 28. On Monday afternoon, the Philadelphia Stock Exchange's oilfield service index was off 4.82 points or 4.6 percent at 100.03, while U.S. April crude oil futures were $1.23 lower at $29.68 a barrel. Halliburton Co., the world's biggest oilfield service provider, was off more than five percent at 36-3/8 while Schlumberger Ltd


OPEC Sees Oil Prices Returning to $80/Barrel by 2020

OPEC forecasters expect oil prices will rise by no more than $5 a barrel a year to reach $80 by 2020, with a slowing in rival non-OPEC production growth not enough to absorb the current oil glut, according to OPEC sources.   The sources said the figures came from an updated mid-term strategy report discussed this week by representatives from the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) in Vienna, which has yet to be fully endorsed by OPEC ministers.  


DP World: Low Bunker Prices to Fuel Economic Growth

Photo courtesy of DP World

Falling ship operating costs and low bunker prices will translate into higher profitability fueling economic growth, says Dubai-headquartered DP World.   As bunker fuel prices drop, so too could shipping costs. Dubai-headquartered DP World says falling oil prices are good news for global shipping.  It plans to double investments this year, local media reports.   The Chairman of  DP World Sultan Ahmed bin Sulayem has stated that the fall in oil price may stimulate


Oil Prices Slip

According to reports, oil prices fell by three per cent Monday, slipping below $59 a barrel as traders looked ahead to U.S. supply data due out Wednesday that is expected to show rising inventories of crude. Doubts about OPEC's ability to implement a 1.2 million barrels a day production cut also weighed on prices. Last week, oil prices surged after the U.S. Energy Department data showed a large decline in crude-oil inventories


Onshore Spending on the Cusp of Recovery?

Graph Source: Douglas-Westwood World OFS and OFE Market Forecast Reports Q2 2016

 DW’s recently released quarterly World Oilfield Services Market Forecast (OFS) and World Oilfield Equipment Market Forecast (OFE) continue to suggest 2016 will see the start of a barren period for the offshore OFS and OFE sectors.  


Singapore's SembMarine to Take Full Control of PPL Shipyard

Singaporean rig builder Sembcorp Marine Ltd said it had agreed to buy the 15 percent of PPL Shipyard Pte Ltd it did not already own for about $115 million from PPL Holdings Pte Ltd and E-Interface Holdings Ltd.   "This will enable the company to optimally manage the businesses


MSRC CEO to Retire in April 2017

Photo courtesy of MSRC

The Marine Spill Response Corporation (MSRC), the nation’s leading oil spill response organization, has announced that Steven T. Benz, the company’s President and CEO, will be retiring on April 30, 2017.   Tim Plummer, Chair of the MSRC Board of Directors


US Oil Drillers Add Rigs for 8th Week in Row

U.S. drillers this week added oil rigs for an eighth consecutive week, the longest recovery streak in the rig count in over two years, as crude prices rebounded toward the key $50-a-barrel mark that makes the return to the well pad viable.  


First Oil from TEN Fields off Ghana

Photo: MODEC

Ghana began pumping crude from a second offshore field operated by British company Tullow Oil on Thursday, hoping the additional revenue will boost its flagging economy.   The Tweneboa, Enyenra and Ntomme (TEN) field expects to average around 23,000 barrels per day (bpd) in 2016


DP World to Delay Jebel Ali Port Expansion

file image (DP World)

Company blames softer market conditions; plan to add 1.5 mln TEU to Terminal 3 delayed into 2017. DP World, one of the world's largest port operators, is delaying the expansion of Dubai's Jebel Ali port, its main facility, because of softer market conditions, the company said on Thursday.


Yamal LNG Project Received €780 Mln in Chinese Loans in July

Photo: Novatek

The Novatek-led Yamal LNG project in Russia received financing in July worth about 780 million euros from China Development Bank and Export-Import Bank of China, according to Yamal's accounting report published on Tuesday.   The 15-year loan deals, of 9.3 billion euros and 9


Oil Extends Rally on Possible Producer Action

Oil prices were up about 1 percent on Friday, on track for their biggest weekly gains since May, after a short covering rally was triggered by comments from Saudi Arabia's oil minister in the previous session about possible action to help stabilize the market.  


US Oil Drillers Add Rigs for 7th Week in a Row

U.S. drillers this week added oil rigs for a seventh consecutive week, according to a closely followed report on Friday, even as analysts revise down rig count growth forecasts and energy firms become more cautious the longer crude holds below $50 a barrel.  


Weak Oil Pushes SBM Offshore to Axe More Jobs

Photo: SBM Offshore

SBM Offshore's first-half results lagged analysts' expectations on Wednesday as challenging conditions persisted in the oil industry and the Dutch oil services company announced an additional 250 job cuts.   It said it did not expect a full recovery in its business until 2018


Hapag-Lloyd Posts H1 Loss

File Image: A Hapag-Lloyd Containership. (credit: Hapag-Lloyd)

Freight rates down 20 pct; CEO says to focus on costs cuts, merger deal with UASC. German container shipping group Hapag-Lloyd said it dropped to a first-half operating loss as disappointing freight rates hurt its business. The loss before interest and tax (EBIT) came to 39


Nordic American Tankers Expects Improvement

Pic: Nordic American Tankers

 Norway's Nordic American Tankers (NAT) posted a net income of $23 million for the second quarter of this year, down 26% year on year from $30.9 million.    But  NAT is hopeful that Suezmax tanker rates would improve in the second half of the year


Court Orders Swiber to Stop Payment of Bank Guarantees

File photo: Swiber

Swiber Offshore Construction, part of troubled Singapore oilfield services firm Swiber Holdings, has received an interim court order to halt payment of bank guarantees for projects it was involved in, a stock exchange filing showed.  


US Trade Deficit Rises to 10-month High in June

File Photo: Alex Sergienko

The U.S. trade deficit rose to a 10-month high in June as rising domestic demand and higher oil prices boosted the import bill while the lagging effects of a strong dollar continued to hamper export growth.   The Commerce Department said on Friday the trade gap increased 8.7 percent to $44


Unipec to Shed ULCC Storage Charter

The UK-based trading arm of Beijing-backed Sinopec will give up the megatanker it booked to park crude in Asia at the onset of the drop in global prices two years ago, sources told Reuters. Unipec UK took over a lease on the TI Europe, one of just two Ultra Large Crude Carriers capable of






 
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