Brent oil rises to four-year high ahead of Iran sanctions, traders eye more hikes

Brent oil rises to four-year high ahead of Iran sanctions, traders eye more hikes

SINGAPORE (Reuters) – Brent crude oil costs rose to their highest since November 2014 on Monday ahead of U.S. sanctions towards Iran, the third-largest producer within the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC), that kick in subsequent month.

FILE PHOTO: Pump jacks function in entrance of a drilling rig in an oil discipline in Midland, Texas U.S. August 22, 2018. REUTERS/Nick Oxford/File Photo

Benchmark Brent crude oil futures LCOc1 rose to as a lot as $83.27 a barrel and had been at $83.21 at 0339 GMT, up 48 cents, or zero.6 % from their final shut.

U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures CLc1 had been up 32 cents, or zero.four %, at $73.57 a barrel.

WTI costs had been supported by a report on Friday of a stagnant rig rely within the United States, which factors to a slowdown in U.S. crude manufacturing C-OUT-T-EIA, which now rivals high producers Russia and Saudi Arabia.

Brent was pushed up by looming sanctions towards Iran, which is able to begin concentrating on its oil sector from Nov. four.

ANZ financial institution mentioned on Monday that “the market is eyeing oil prices at $100 per barrel”.

In an indication that the monetary market is positioning itself for additional worth rises, hedge funds elevated their bullish wagers on U.S. crude within the week to Sept. 25, knowledge from the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) confirmed on Friday, rising futures and choices positions in New York and London by three,728 contracts to 346,566 throughout the interval.

In an extra signal of the impression that the U.S. sanctions on Iran may have in the marketplace, China’s Sinopec (600028.SS) mentioned its is halving loadings of Iranian crude oil this month. China is the largest purchaser of Iranian oil.

“If Chinese refiners do comply with U.S. sanctions more fully than expected, then the market balance is likely to tighten even more aggressively,” Edward Bell, commodity analyst at Emirates NBD financial institution wrote in a word revealed on Sunday.

U.S. President Donald Trump known as Saudi Arabia’s King Salman on Saturday, discussing methods to keep ample provide as soon as Iran’s exports are hit by sanctions.

“Until sizable supply is offered up by OPEC, ultimately traders will continue to push the envelope even more,” mentioned Stephen Innes, head of buying and selling for Asia-Pacific at futures brokerage Oanda in Singapore.

“Even if they (Saudi Arabia) wanted to bend to President Trump’s wishes, how much spare capacity does the Kingdom have?” requested Innes.

“We’re going to find out very soon as approximately 1.5 million barrels (per day) of Iranian oil is effectively going offline on Nov. 4. If the market senses that Saudi Arabia capacity is tapped out at 10.5 million bpd … oil prices will rocket higher with the flashy $100 per barrel price tag indeed a reasonable sounding target,” Innes mentioned.

(For a graphic on ‘U.S. crude oil output, rig rely’ click on


With oil costs hovering, there are considerations over their inflationary impact on demand development, particularly in Asia’s rising markets the place weakening currencies are additional including to high gas import prices.

Add the commerce disputes between the United States and different main powers, particularly China, and financial development into 2019 could possibly be eroded.

Growth in China’s manufacturing sector already sputtered in September as each exterior and home demand weakened, two surveys confirmed on Sunday.

In Japan, enterprise confidence amongst huge producers declined within the final quarter its lowest in practically a 12 months, as companies felt the pinch from rising uncooked materials prices and as international commerce situations worsened.

(For a graphic on ‘Oil costs in numerous currencies’ click on

Reporting by Henning Gloystein; Editing by Joseph Radford and Christian Schmollinger

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