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Bearish US utility coal market sentiment unlikely to lift before end of 2020: Seaport

No end to the bearish sentiment in the US utility coal market is expected through 2020, according to analysts at Seaport Global, as a result of low domestic natural gas prices and a weak export market. The utility coal “market started the year in good shape, but has gotten materially worse ever since,” driven by a low front-month gas futures price, Mark Levin, senior analyst, and Nathan Martin, senior associate analyst, wrote in the Seaport note Tuesday. The CIF ARA coal market has been “obliterated,” with the front-month price falling ...

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Trade war fatigue saps global base metals activity: Andy Home

The base metal markets are suffering from trade war fatigue. Trading activity fell by 7% on the London Metal Exchange (LME) in the first half of this year as robust micro fundamentals were subsumed by the rumbling stand-off between the United States and China. It’s not just London. Activity on the CME copper contract has fallen as well and even Chinese speculators appear to have largely given up on the base metals for now. In a world of twitter politics, uncertainty rules and money has evidently left the sector for ...

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China steel makers need to look at home

There’s no shortage of irony in the fact Chinese steel makers have asked their government to help “sustain order” in the iron ore market. Because it is Chinese government policy that is stopping one of the usual market responses to soaring prices. Iron ore futures steadied on Monday on the Dalian Commodity Exchange after sharp falls in futures and spot prices on Friday following news of a meeting in late June between eight big steel producers at the China Iron and Steel Association (CISA). The group questioned whether there were ...

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An Oil Behemoth Is Worth Less Than Its Energy Reserves In the Ground

PetroChina Co. looks cheap on many levels, perhaps none more so than comparing it to the value of its reserves beneath the Earth’s surface. By plotting its enterprise value against reserves, China’s state-run oil and gas champion is the cheapest among global energy firms tracked by Sanford C. Bernstein & Co. Its shares have sunk 14% in Hong Kong this year to trade almost at the lowest since 2005. That’s despite a 19% gain in crude prices. “With PetroChina’s current assets and asset quality, even with modest valuation methods, the ...

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Oil at six-week high on Gulf of Mexico storm, Iran tensions

Oil prices hit a six-week high on Thursday as oil rigs in the Gulf of Mexico were evacuated ahead of a storm, while an incident with a British tanker in the Middle East highlighted tensions in the region. Brent crude futures were up 32 cents at $67.33 a barrel by 1153 GMT. Earlier in the session they hit their highest since May 30 at $67.65, after ending Wednesday up 4.4%. U.S. West Texas Intermediate crude futures were up 25 cents at $60.68 a barrel, having touched their highest since May ...

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Iraq could surpass Saudi Arabia in Oil Production

A senior oil executive has predicted that Iraq could surpass Saudi Arabia as an oil producer. Addressing delegates at CWC‘s Iraq Petroleum conference in London, Majid Jafar (pictured), CEO of Sharjah-based Crescent Petroleum, said: “Iraq is hugely underexplored. We at Crescent know of 300 structures just in the Western Desert that have yet to be drilled, so I for one believe that Iraq has a lot of potential, and I wouldn’t be surprised if it becomes the largest producer in OPEC during my career.” Crescent Petroleum has an interest in ...

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U.S. natgas output, demand seen rising to record highs in 2019

U.S. dry natural gas production will rise to an all-time high of 91.35 billion cubic feet per day (bcfd) in 2019 from a record high of 83.39 bcfd last year, the Energy Information Administration’s Short Term Energy Outlook (STEO) said. The latest July output projection for 2019 was up from EIA’s 90.60 bcfd forecast in June. EIA also projected U.S. gas consumption would rise to an all-time high of 84.59 bcfd in 2019 from a record high 82.07 bcfd a year ago. The 2019 demand projection in the July STEO ...

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Refinery news roundup: Some maintenance in Europe draws to a close

Some of the maintenance works in Europe have been drawing to a close. Meanwhile, French oil major Total has started up production at its La Mede biodiesel plant in southern France, with the first batches of biofuel coming off the line, the company said. The start of production is the final step in converting the former oil refinery into a new energies complex, the company said, adding that the project was launched in 2015. La Mede stopped processing crude oil at the end of 2016 to be converted to a ...

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Wall St. opens higher as technology stocks gain

U.S. stocks opened higher on Thursday, lifted by technology stocks, extending a rally from the prior session that was powered by Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell’s comments that bolstered the case for an interest rate cut this month. The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 89.96 points, or 0.33%, at the open to 26,950.16. The S&P 500 opened higher by 6.55 points, or 0.22%, at 2,999.62. The Nasdaq Composite gained 16.75 points, or 0.20%, to 8,219.28 at the opening bell. Source: Reuters (Reporting by Amy Caren Daniel in Bengaluru; Editing by ...

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EU Warns Against Further Tariff Hikes

The European Union said additional tariff hikes by the U.S. and China could weaken investor confidence and global financial markets as it once again lowered its forecast for economic growth in 2020. In its quarterly report on the outlook released Wednesday, the European Commission said it now expects economic output in the currency area to increase by 1.4% next year, having previously forecast growth of 1.5%. It left its forecast for this year unchanged at 1.2%, which would mark a sharp slowdown from the 1.9% rate of expansion recorded in ...

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ECB Seen Readying the Pumps for Return to Massive Bond Buying

Financial firms including Goldman Sachs Group Inc. and Morgan Stanley are predicting that the European Central Bank’s flagship crisis-fighting tool will soon make a comeback. Policy makers could relaunch bond purchases as soon as September — barely nine months after they capped the program at 2.6 trillion euros ($3 trillion), according to Evercore ISI’s Krishna Guha. Other institutions calling for the ECB to restart purchases by early next year include ABN Amro Bank NV, Danske Bank A/S, and BNP Paribas SA. ECB President Mario Draghi said last month that officials ...

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Fitch Ratings: Western European Sovereign Rating Trend Stabilised in 1H19

Rating momentum for western European sovereign has stabilised in 2019, with no upgrades or downgrades in the first half of the year, Fitch Ratings says. Three countries – Austria, Finland and Portugal – are on Positive Outlook. Italy and San Marino are on Negative Outlook and the UK is on Rating Watch Negative (RWN). The revision of Portugal’s Outlook to Positive in May reflects our expectation that the sovereign will maintain its recent track record of falling public debt/GDP. The Negative Outlook on Italy’s ‘BBB’ rating reflects the policy uncertainty ...

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China’s Looming Deflation Fears Strengthen Policy Easing Case

The case for Chinese policy makers to ramp up stimulus grew stronger, as tepid domestic demand and falling commodity prices increase the risk of a return to factory deflation. Growth in China’s producer price index slowed to zero in June from a year earlier, the weakest reading in almost three years. Prices fell 0.3% from May. The downward trend accentuates fears of a return of deflation for manufacturing, which would erode company profits and increase debt repayment pressures. The prospect of falling prices adds to the case for the People’s ...

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Baltic Dry Index climbs to 1816, up 39 points

Today, Thursday, July 11 2019, the Baltic Dry Index climbed by 39 points, reaching 1816 points.

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Ten, Ltd Announces Attractive Long-Term Charter For A Suezmax Crude Tanker

TEN, Ltd. announced an up to 36-month charter to a major European oil concern, for a suezmax tanker currently operating in the spot market on a minimum rate with profit sharing provisions to capture any freight upticks during the life of the contract. The gross revenues expected over the maximum period of this employment are estimated to be in the region of $23.0 million. “Whilst strategically positioning the fleet for profitable operations, safety at sea remains TEN’s top priority. We would like to congratulate the Captain and crew of our ...

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