Oil is stable as soaring electric fuel prices offsets concerns over crude demand


A gas station attendant prepares to refuel a car in Rome, Italy, January 4, 2012. REUTERS / Max Rossi

  • IMF slashes growth prospects for major economies
  • China’s crude imports in September fall 15% year-on-year – data
  • U.S. Gasoline Futures On Track For Higher Close Since October 2014
  • Market expects API data at 2030 GMT

NEW YORK, Oct. 13 (Reuters) – Oil prices held steady on Wednesday, with soaring fuel costs for power generation offsetting expectations of slower growth in crude demand as major economies shrank. struggling with inflation and supply chain issues.

Brent futures fell 14 cents, or 0.2%, to $ 83.28 a barrel at 2:03 p.m. EDT (1803 GMT). U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude fell 4 cents, or 0.1%, to $ 80.60.

On Tuesday, WTI closed at its highest since October 2014 for a third consecutive day.

Prices were under pressure early on when China, the world’s largest importer of crude, released data showing September’s imports fell 15% from a year earlier. Read more

China, along with Europe and India, face shortages of coal and natural gas that have driven up the prices of fuels used for power generation. Petroleum products are used as a substitute.

The European Commission outlined measures the European Union could use to tackle soaring energy prices and said it will explore the purchase of common gas between countries. Read more

The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) has downgraded its forecast for global oil demand growth for 2021 while maintaining its 2022 vision.

But OPEC said soaring natural gas prices could boost demand for petroleum products as end users change. Read more

“Today’s OPEC monthly report appears to offer something for both bulls and bears, with the agency unexpectedly lowering its forecast for global oil demand… for this year while adjusting lower its estimate of growth in non-OPEC supply, ”said Jim Ritterbusch, president of Ritterbusch and Associates in Galena, Illinois.

Global markets should not expect more Iranian oil in the near future. The United States has said it is ready to consider “all options” if Iran is unwilling to revert to the 2015 nuclear deal.

In Russia, President Vladimir Putin said oil prices could reach $ 100 a barrel and noted that Moscow was ready to supply more natural gas to Europe if requested. Read more

Energy markets are focused on how the supply crisis will affect demand for oil, particularly in the world’s second-largest economy, China. Read more

“These are troubling times for China. A severe energy crisis is hitting the country,” said Stephen Brennock of broker PVM.

In India, fuel consumption in September spiked higher as economic activity accelerated, but soaring global oil prices could block the recovery of the world’s third-largest oil importer. Read more

In the United States, the government predicts that consumers will spend more on heating their homes this winter than last year, mainly due to soaring energy prices.

The White House has held talks in recent days with U.S. oil and gas producers to help reduce rising fuel costs, according to two sources familiar with the matter. Read more

U.S. gasoline futures were on track to reach their highest close since October 2014 for a fourth consecutive day.

The market is awaiting data on US oil inventories, delayed by a day after the Columbus Day holiday on Monday.

Data from the American Petroleum Institute, an industry group, is due Wednesday at 4:30 p.m. EDT (8:30 p.m. GMT) and from the US Energy Information Administration on Thursday.

Additional reporting by Sonali Paul in Melbourne and Florence Tan in Singapore and Noah Browning in London; Editing by Emelia Sithole-Matarise, Barbara Lewis, Louise Heavens, Jan Harvey and Jane Merriman

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