• 2013 February 14 18:50

    Bunker Review W.07, 2013

    The Bunker Review is contributed by Marine Bunker Exchange

    There was limited trade activity on the oil markets this week as many Asian markets are shut because of the Lunar New Year. However general trend was the optimism on the expectations of growing fuel demand in emerging economies.

     China's strong trade data for January, the first hard economic numbers of the year, showed a surge in exports and imports that was not solely explained by the timing of the Lunar New Year holiday and confirmed the rebound in the world's second-biggest economy. The nation’s crude imports last month rose 7.4 percent from a year ago to 25.15 million tons, or 5.92 million barrels per day, the third highest daily rate on record. China bought 24.87 million metric tons of crude more than it exported. Meanwhile, crude stockpiles are still rather low:  they were dropped 3.6 percent at the end of December.

     Also giving oil prices a lift, both the EIA and the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) have raised forecasts for demand this year. OPEC expects global oil demand will rise by 800,000 barrels a day to 89.7 million, which marks an increase of 80,000 barrels a day from last month’s report. The U.S. Energy Information Administration in turn said on Feb.12, that world oil demand will grow faster than previously expected in 2013 and rapid increases in the North American supply may not be enough to keep gasoline prices in check as spring approaches. EIA increased its forecast for demand growth by 110,000 bpd to 1.05 million bpd in 2013, taking global demand to 90.2 million bpd this year as the world economy recovers.

     Meanwhile the IEA report on Feb. 13 said U.S. crude inventories rose by 560,000 barrels in the week ending Feb. 8, though the gain was slightly less than expected, while stockpiles of gasoline and distillates fell. Another rise in weekly oil stockpiles marks the fourth consecutive week of inventory increases, the longest streak since May.  Rising supplies may slow down the rally in oil prices in the near future.

     While global demand growth is supporting oil prices, the situation in the euro zone still threatens to weigh further on equities and the euro. A corruption scandal has caused political instability in Spain and the outcome of Italy's upcoming election is becoming less certain. Investors are also watching a G20 gathering to discuss a financial bailout for Cyprus, although no firm decision is expected until after the completion of the Cypriot election at the end of this month.

     One more supporting factor is tensions in the Middle East and worries about oil supply from the region. In the beginning of the week Iran rejected the notion of direct talks with the U.S. over its nuclear ambitions at the same time that the U.S. has tightened economic sanctions. Tensions slightly eased on Feb.12 when Iran acknowledged it was converting some of its higher-grade enriched uranium into reactor fuel, a move that could help prevent a dispute with the West over its nuclear program. As a part of a deal, on Feb.13 a team of United Nations inspectors arrived in Iran to negotiate wider access to the Persian Gulf nation’s nuclear facilities.

    For the coming week expect oil prices to go upwards. 



    380 cSt HSFO

    380 cSt LSFO




    Rotterdam 2013-02-14



    Rotterdam 2012-02-14






    Gibraltar 2013-02-14



    Gibraltar 2012-02-14






    St Petersburg 2013-02-14



    St Petersburg 2012-02-14






    Panama Canal 2013-02-14



    Panama Canal 2012-02-14






    Busan 2013-02-14



    Busan 2012-02-14






    Fujairah 2013-02-14



    Fujairah 2012-02-14




    All prices stated in USD / Mton


    All time high Brent = $147.50 (July 11, 2008)

    All time high Light crude (WTI) = $147.27 (July 11, 2008)



    Close Feb. 13

    Light Crude Oil (WTI)


    Brent Crude Oil



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