OIL FUTURES: Crude slides as easing supply tightness, higher gasoline stockpiles hit demand
21st July 2022 14:31 GMT

Crude oil fell during late morning European trade July 21, as bearish gasoline stock data and easing supply tightness raised demand concerns.

At 1114 GMT, the ICE Brent September futures contract fell $4.28/b to $102.64/b while the NYMEX WTI September contract was down $4.25/b at $95.65/b.

Libya’s oil and gas minister expects oil production to return to “normal” levels of 1.2 million b/d in a week to 10 days as the OPEC member begins pumping crude after the lifting of force majeure on exports and oil fields.

“Production has reached today around 600,000 b/d. Production, maybe, I expect in a week to 10 days to return to normal levels … of around 1.2 million b/d,” Mohamed Oun said in an interview with Al Ahrar TV posted on the ministry's Facebook page July 20. “Three tankers are expected to begin exporting more than 2 million barrels.”

Meanwhile, US gasoline stocks rose by 3.5 million barrels for the week ending July 15, according to data released by the US Energy Information Administration July 20.

The consecutive weekly growth in gasoline stocks would “typically read as an indicator of lower consumer demand, and even more within the context of a seasonal countertrend. Gasoline demand usually is quite strong during the US midsummer months,” SPI Asset Management managing partner Stephen Innes said in a July 21 note.

Meanwhile, crude volumes nudged down by 446,000 barrels in the same period to 426.6 million barrels. This leaves stocks 5% below the five-year average for this time of year.

The fear of higher interest rates also dented prices as the European Central Bank weighs a hike in rates. A decision is expected to be announced this afternoon.

Bunkerworld ,
21st July 2022 14:31 GMT