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Oil Pushes Higher as Array of Supply Risks Eclipse China Concern


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These translations are done via Google Translate
(Bloomberg) Oil gained as a series of challenges to supply eclipsed concern about the lingering threat to energy demand from lockdowns in China.West Texas Intermediate traded near $103 in a week that has seen futures swing sharply in a range of about $10. As the Ukraine war grinds on, European Union members are moving to cut dependence on Russian oil, with German Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock saying the country plans to stop imports by year-end. At the same time, Russian output has fallen, and protests in Libya hurt supply.

Brent and WTI have rallied by more than a third this year

Oil has been hugely volatile since the outbreak of war. After spiking above $130, prices have retreated amid a liquidity crunch, with traders fleeing the market in the face of extreme volatility and onerous margin calls. Open interest in WTI futures continues to fall, indicating that the pullback in activity is ongoing.

“The oil market continues to be characterized by a tug-of-war between concerns about demand and concerns about supply outages,” said Carsten Fritsch, an analyst at Commerzbank AG. “This is also evident from the constant fluctuations in oil prices.”

GLJ
Prices:
  • West Texas Intermediate for June delivery added 0.7% to $102.88 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange at 10:19 a.m. in London.
  • Brent for June settlement rose 0.9% to $107.80 a barrel on the ICE Futures Europe exchange.

In China, meanwhile, officials are struggling to eradicate a wave of Covid-19 in key cities. Strict curbs have hurt mobility, including for the nation’s fleet of trucks, and banks are reducing their forecasts from the nation’s expansion this year. President Xi Jinping told a local forum that while economic fundamentals remain strong, “we have yet to walk from the shadow”of the pandemic.

GLJ

Other corners of the globe are seeing indications of robust fuel demand though. On Wednesday the 3-2-1 futures crack spread in the U.S. — a measure of the profitability of turning crude into gasoline and diesel — shot up to the highest level in records going back to 1986. In Europe, France’s oil-product sales were above pre-Covid levels in March.



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