MARKET WATCH: NYMEX oil prices volatile after IEA market report

Light, sweet crude prices gained modestly on the New York market May 12, holding well above $46/bbl. But oil prices fell in early May 13 trading, which analysts attributed to reaction to an Oil Market Report released May 12 from the International Energy Agency.

IEA said Iran’s oil production has risen faster than expected, but statistics show world crude oversupply still continues to shrink (OGJ Online, May 12, 2016).

In April, Iran’s oil production was nearly 3.6 million b/d, a level last reported in November 2011. More importantly, Iran’s oil exports reached 2 million b/d, a substantial increase from 1.4 million b/d seen in March.

Both the US and Brent crude oil price benchmarks have gained more than 10% since talks among some major producers on Apr. 17 in Qatar failed to result in any production freeze agreement. That meeting included both the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries and non-OPEC members.

Saudi Arabia demanded that Iran take part in a coordinated production freeze. But Iran is building its production and export levels since nuclear-related international sanctions were lifted earlier this year.

Energy prices

The June crude oil contract on the New York Mercantile Exchange gained 47¢ to settle at $46.70/bbl, and the July contract was up 44¢ to $47.45/bbl.

The NYMEX natural gas contract for June delivery fell 1.8¢ to a rounded $2.15/MMbtu. The Henry Hub price was $2/MMbtu, down 1¢.

Heating oil for June delivery dropped less than a penny to remain at a rounded $1.39/gal. The price for reformulated gasoline stock for oxygenates blending for June gained less than a penny to remain at a rounded $1.58/gal.

The Brent crude contract for July on London’s ICE climbed 48¢ to $48.08/bbl. The August contract gained 39¢ to $48.42/bbl. The June gas oil contract was $411/tonne, down $3.

The Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries basket of crudes was $43.31/bbl, up $1.91.

Contact Paula Dittrick at

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