Asian markets mixed as trade spat in focus, oil stabilizes

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"The market is supported by concerns the sanctions on Iran are going to reduce Iranian supply", said Tony Nunan, oil risk manager at Mitsubishi in Tokyo.

The U.S. Energy Information Administration, meanwhile, reported that crude inventories fell 1.4 million barrels in the latest week, less than half the 3.3 million-barrel draw analysts had expected.

Furthermore, oil prices were dragged down by the increasing output of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) and Russian Federation.

For the past week, crude imports averaged 7.9 million barrels a day, up by 182,000 compared with the previous week.

Gasoline exports edged up 75,000 b/d to 588,000 b/d, while distillate exports slipped 51,000 b/d to 1.23 million b/d.

Inventories at Cushing, Oklahoma, the NYMEX crude futures delivery and pricing point, tightened further, falling 590,000 barrels to 21.8 million barrels, the EIA data showed. USA refineries produced about 9.9 million barrels of gasoline a day last week, down by about 600,000 barrels compared to the prior week. Brent crude, the standard for global oil prices, rose 7 cents to $72.35 per barrel in London. Brent crude, the benchmark for more than half the world's oil, was up 0.5% at $74.13/bbl in London, while U.S. WTI was 0.3% higher at $69.23 in NY. Tuesday's sanctions primarily hit Iran's ability to function in global financial markets.

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Last week, a news report said Chinese officials has rejected U.S. requests to cut imports of Iranian oil but added that China's imports might not rise further than current levels.

ANALYST'S TAKE: "Looking at the rhetorical battle between the United States and China recently, it may appear that finding a clue to resolve (the trade war) is impossible", said Lee Seunghoon, an analyst at Meritz Securities Seoul, South Korea. It also gives American producers greater inroads to the fastest-growing oil consumer, a market that's now dominated by Middle-Eastern suppliers.

Syncrude Canada's nameplate capacity stands for roughly 10 percent of the Canadian crude oil supply. At the same time, President Donald Trump restored some American sanctions on Iran and has reaffirmed plans to impose tougher penalties on the nation's oil sales in November.

International Olympic Committee will buy 2 million barrels of Mars oil in November, a combination cargo containing 1 million barrels each of Eagle Ford and Mars in December and 2 million barrels of Louisiana Light Sweet (LLS) in January, Sharma said.

Beyond the sanctions, the oil market was focusing on the USA market, where the American Petroleum Institute said on Tuesday that crude inventories fell by 6 million barrels in the week to August 3 to 407.2 million.

This story has not been edited by Firstpost staff and is generated by auto-feed.