Oil Prices Climbs For Fifth Week on Supply Concerns

By the Al Attiyah Foundation

Cover Image Attribute: Barrels of Crude Oil / Shutterstock
Cover Image Attribute: Barrels of Crude Oil / Shutterstock

By the Al Attiyah Foundation

Oil prices slid for a second day in a row on Friday, pressured by an unexpected rise in U.S. crude and fuel inventories while investors took profits after the benchmarks touched seven-year highs earlier last week. Brent futures fell 49 cents, or 0.6%, to settle at $87.89 a barrel, while U.S. West Texas Intermediate crude fell 41 cents, or 0.5%, to settle at $85.14. However, both crude benchmarks rose for a fifth week in a row, gaining around 2% last week. Prices were up more than 10% so far this year on concerns over tightening supplies. The latest pullback is most likely due to a combination of pre-weekend profit-taking and the absence of fresh bullish catalysts, according to analysts. Other analysts also said they expect the current pressure on prices to be limited owing to supply concerns and rising demand. Tensions in Eastern Europe and the Middle East are also heightening fears of supply disruption. Meanwhile, the EIA reported the first U.S. stock build since November and 11-month highs for gasoline inventories. Crude inventories rose by 515,000 barrels in the week to Jan. 14 to 413.8 million barrels, while gasoline stocks rose by 5.9 million barrels to 246.6 million barrels.

Benchmark Oil Prices

Asian LNG Falls Amid Chinese LNG Cargo Sale Tenders


Asian spot LNG prices dropped last week as large Chinese sell tenders signaled that supplies are well-stocked amid continued tepid Asian demand. The average LNG price for March delivery into north-east Asia fell to around $23.00 per metric million British thermal units, down $9.60 or nearly 30% from the previous week. China's Sinopec Corp has issued a tender to sell up to 45 cargoes of liquefied natural gas for 2022 deliveries, in a rare sell tender to take advantage of high Asian spot prices. Meanwhile, Europe continues to receive a high amount of LNG tankers, with the first-ever LNG shipment from Indonesia arriving in Greece late last week. The arrival of several LNG gas tankers into Europe has helped to ease prices but concerns over Russia-Ukraine tensions remain. In the United States, natural gas futures climbed over 5% on Friday on what is expected to be the country's biggest gas demand day on record with forecasts for more cold weather and higher-than-expected heating demand over the next two weeks. In addition to boosting gas demand, the cold last week cut gas output to its lowest in four months as wells and other equipment froze in Texas, Pennsylvania, and elsewhere. 

Benchmark Gas Prices

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IndraStra Global: Oil Prices Climbs For Fifth Week on Supply Concerns
Oil Prices Climbs For Fifth Week on Supply Concerns
By the Al Attiyah Foundation
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