Oil climbs to one-week high on US supply concerns

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SINGAPORE – Oil prices climbed on Monday (Sept 13) to a one-week high in a second straight session of gains as concerns over United States supplies following damage from Hurricane Ida supported the market, along with expectations for higher demand.

Brent crude rose 48 US cents, or 0.7 per cent, to US$73.40 a barrel, and US West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude also added 49 US cents, or 0.7 per cent, to US$70.21 a barrel. Both markets were at their highest since Sept 3 earlier in the session.

About three-quarters of the US Gulf’s offshore oil production, or about 1.4 million barrels per day, has remained halted since late August – roughly equal to what Opec member Nigeria produces.

“To compound matters, more oil refineries in Louisiana have resumed operations, raising demand for crude oil,” ANZ analysts said in a note.

Royal Dutch Shell, the largest oil producer in the US Gulf of Mexico, on Thursday cancelled some cargoes due to damage to offshore facilities from Hurricane Ida, signalling energy losses would continue for weeks.

However, the number of rigs in operation in the US grew in the latest week, energy provider Baker Hughes said, indicating production may rise in the coming weeks.

Beyond the impact of Ida, market attention will focus this week on potential revisions to the oil demand outlook for 2022 from the Organisation of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (Opec) and the International Energy Agency. Opec will likely revise its forecast lower on Monday, two people familiar with the matter said.

Money managers raised their net long US crude futures and options positions in the week to Sept 7, the US Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) said on Friday. The speculator group raise its combined futures and options position in New York and London by 1,035 contracts to 279,610 during the period.

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