MABUX: Bunker market this morning, Jan 23
The Bunker Review was contributed by Marine Bunker Exchange (MABUX)
MABUX World Bunker Index (consists of a range of prices for 380 HSFO, 180 HSFO and MGO (Gasoil) in the main world hubs declined on January 22:
380 HSFO: USD/MT – 379.48 (-1.65)
180 HSFO: USD/MT – 624.00 (-3.00)
MGO: USD/MT – 667.43 (-6.52)
Meantime, world oil indexes fell on Jan.22 as the International Energy Agency's (IEA) forecast of a market surplus in the first half of this year.
Brent for March settlement decreased by $1.38 to $63.21 a barrel on the London-based ICE Futures Europe exchange. West Texas Intermediate for March fell by $1.64 to $56.74 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange. The Brent benchmark traded at the premium of $6.47 to WTI. Gasoil for February delivery declined by $16.75.
Today morning oil indexes continue to decline as the American Petroleum Institute (API) reported that crude inventories rose last week.
According to the API, oil inventories gained by 1.6 million for the week ended Jan. 17. The Energy Information Administration (EIA) will report its weekly inventory numbers today, one day later than usual due to the Martin Luther King Day Holiday on Monday. It is expected that crude stockpiles fell by 1 million barrels last week, extending the previous week’s drop of 2.5 million barrels.
At the same time, the IEA expects the market to be in surplus by a million barrels per day (bpd) in the first half of this year. Supply worries were underlined by remarks Tuesday by International Energy Agency (IEA) on the sidelines of the World Economic Forum annual meeting in Davos, Switzerland. It sees “an abundance of energy supply in terms of oil and gas. It’s the reason that recent incidents we have seen — with the Iranian general killed, Libya unrest — didn’t boost international oil prices”.
Libya's National Oil Corp on Jan.20 declared force majeure on the loading of oil from two major oil fields after the latest development in a long-running military conflict. Unless oil facilities quickly return to operation Libya's oil output will be reduced from about 1.2 million barrels per day (bpd) to just 72,000 bpd.
Meanwhile the indexes were pressed down by the emergence from China of a new strain of a coronavirus, with concern focused on the impact a pandemic might have on economic growth. The outbreak has stirred memories of the SARS epidemic of 2002-2003. Should the new virus develop into SARS-like proportions, hitting travel and growth, demand for oil could fall by 260,000 bpd. The mysteries coronavirus killed at least 17 people and infected hundreds of people in China will continue to spread to other countries. It is already found in Hong Kong, one diagnosis in the U.S. and Macau, and patients under examination in Japan, Mexico and Russia. On Jan.23, China’ state broadcast CCTV reported that Beijing has issued a travel suspension in Wuhan, a city of 11 million. All outbound flights and rail service are banned, according to the report, which said “citizens should not leave the city without special reasons.” The halt also includes travel by bus, subway and ferry.
Supply is still likely to rise, with U.S. crude production in large shale deposits expected to rise to record highs in February, although the pace of increase is likely to be the lowest in about year, the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) said on Jan 21. Inventories of crude oil in the U.S. are likely to have fallen last week.
U.S. President Donald Trump on Jan.22 vowed dramatic action with the World Trade Organization, saying the group's director general would visit Washington as soon as next week, but giving no other details. The WTO lost its ability to intervene in trade disputes after the United States effectively paralyzed it when two of three members exited, leaving the trade arbiter unable to issue rulings.
South America’s largest oil producer, Brazil, will launch discussions on potentially joining OPEC in July. However, even if talks are successful, Brazil is not expected to become a member of OPEC this year. The idea that Brazil may join OPEC was first aired in October last year, when Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro said that OPEC’s top producer and de facto leader Saudi Arabia had informally asked Brazil to join the organization.
We expect bunker prices will continue to fall: 5-7 USD down for IFO, 14-16 USD down for MGO.