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Global Energy Advisory July 20th 2018

Globe

Trump wanted lower oil prices prior to Iran sanctions and US midterm elections. He’s got them.

It’s been a rough ride for oil prices this week—culminating in the third-straight decline. And we can get back to the real fundamentals here: The trade war is causing demand to slow in both the US and China. Now, OPEC is saying that exports next month will be slowed a bit. The Saudis say exports will drop by 100,000 bpd next month to hedge against oversupply—a factor that slightly stabilized oil prices on Friday.

The one-week picture for Brent looked like this:

(Click to enlarge)

And for WTI:

(Click to enlarge) 

Also tempering the oil price drop was the end of a strike Thursday by Norwegian drilling rig workers after 10 days.

At the same time, China’s Shanghai Futures Exchange (ShFE) has launched a new bonded fuel contract and by the close of the market on the day of the launch (July 16th), trading volume had reached 1.8 billion yuan (nearly $270 million). In March, China officially launched the trading of crude oil futures on the Shanghai International Energy Exchange, and Monday’s new contracts were the second since then. Major players are stepping up to the plate for this, including CNPC and Sinopec. Welcome to the third oil benchmark.

This all leads back to sanctions on Iran, the initial round which goes into effect on August 6, followed by another round to close it off on November…

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