The slump in oil prices continues after a short breather

The plunge in oil prices appeared to have been halted on Thursday after Switzerland’s central bank intervened to bail out Credit Suisse and energy ministers of Russia and Saudi Arabia met to signal their willingness to step in if the collapse continues . On Friday morning, however, prices went back down.

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Friday March 17, 2023

In one of the most turbulent weeks for oil markets in years, oil prices are on track to shed more than 10%. The collapse in oil prices took a breather on Thursday as the Swiss National Bank stepped in to bail out Credit Suisse, while Saudi Arabia and Russia signaled their willingness to intervene. However, the bearish sentiment is difficult to shake and prices continued to decline on Friday morning.

Australia sees LNG diversion as winter looms. Australian authorities could force LNG exporters along the country’s east coast to divert excess gas supplies to domestic consumers while natural gas production falls, which has increased the risk of gas shortages between 2023 and 2026.

The latest refinery addition in the US is set to begin soon. The last large-scale refinery project to come online in the US is the 250,000 b/d Blade project ExxonMobil (NYSE:XOM) The Beaumont, TX refinery is slated to come online in the coming weeks, fueling Permian crude and increasing naphtha and gasoline supplies to the US Gulf Coast.

Canada calls for a national tailings cleanup plan. The federal government of Canada and the Albertan authorities will set up a task force that would attempt to expedite the cleanup of oil sands tail ponds after a 10-month leak at Imperial Oils (TSX:IMO) The Kearl project was not properly reported.

The story goes on

White House delaying SPR return dates The Biden administration revised two exchange contracts it signed Shell (LON:SHEL) covering 3.6 million barrels of US SPR crude and delaying its return until 2025, despite assurances from the US Department of Energy that it would speed up buybacks.

IAEA Says Tons of Uranium Missing in Libya Inspectors from the United Nations nuclear agency discovered about 2.5 tons of uranium went missing from a Libyan site controlled by the rival Benghazi government, although east Libyan forces reportedly found the missing uranium the next day.

Iraq and Kurdistan are nearing an agreement. The Iraqi federal government and regional Kurdish authorities have reached an agreement that oil proceeds from Kurdistan will be transferred to a bank account under federal government oversight, potentially leading to a settlement of a long-running legal dispute.

Exxon unhappy with Italian LNG prospects US oil major ExxonMobil (NYSE:XOM) The company is reportedly considering selling its majority stake in the $9 billion capacity LNG terminal Rovigo.

Canada’s East Coast Terminal does not take place. Spanish oil company Repsol (BME: REP) has scrapped its plans to build an LNG terminal on Canada’s east coast because of high transportation costs to deliver gas to Saint John, NB, and a lack of buyers willing to commit to 15- to 20-year offtake agreements for the gas would oblige.

Credit Suisse worries Greek shippers. The massive collapse of the Swiss bank has been shaken by financial losses and corruption scandals Credit Suisse (SWX:CSGN) It’s also bad news for Greek shipping companies, as CS was the largest lender to Greek shipping with an active portfolio of at least $5.2 billion.

Falling LNG prices prompt Chinese to buy. As LNG spot prices continue to fall for a fourth straight month, currently trending around $13 per mmBtu, China is stepping up buying, with Kpler data showing arrivals rose to 5.4 million tonnes in March, a 9% increase compared to the previous month. Month.

Guinea iron prospects boosted by breakthrough. One of the world’s largest iron ore deposits, the Simandou mine in Guinea, will soon resume production after the operator Rio Tinto (NYSE: RIO) agreed new terms for the JV running the project and guaranteed the government a 15% stake.

Kuwait also wants to act. Kuwaiti national oil company KPC is considering establishing an oil trading arm, reportedly as early as late 2023, to replicate the success of Saudi Aramco, which already has trading offices in Dhahran, Fujairah, Singapore, Houston and London.

Venezuela tests water for Colombian gas exports. As Colombia’s leftist President Gustavo Petro steps up cooperation with Venezuela, the two countries are looking to reactivate the 224km Antonio Ricaurte gas pipeline and export about 25 MMCf/day of Venezuelan gas to their western neighbors.

Shell divests non-operating interests in Malaysia. Energy Major in UK Shell (LON:SHEL) sold its unoperated interests in two offshore fields in Malaysia to local company Petroleum Sarawak, leaving it with 19 production-sharing agreements, including the most recently launched Rosmari Majoram project.

By Michael Kern for

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