HOUSTON (ICIS)--Here is Friday's midday Americas oil and chemical market summary from ICIS.
CRUDE: Apr WTI: $98.56/bbl, up 36 cents; Apr Brent: $108.34/bbl, up 95 cents
NYMEX WTI crude futures worked higher on pre-weekend short covering after posting losses in three out of the past four sessions. The Ukraine crisis provided underlying support but mainly on Brent. The International Energy Agency’s monthly report stated that rising supplies in Iraq and in other producing countries should satisfy growing oil demand. WTI topped out at $99.28/bbl before retreating.
RBOB: Apr $2.9616/gal, up 2.87 cents/gal
Reformulated blendstock for oxygen blending (RBOB) gasoline futures rebounded some during morning trading as it tracked some strength in crude futures.
NATURAL GAS: Apr $4.407/MMBtu, up 2.4 cents/MMBtu
Natural gas futures found some support at the end of the trading week as higher demand from colder temperatures and tighter supply from historic 10-year low inventories were taking effect. In addition, upcoming nuclear maintenance scheduled for the spring is expected to raise gas-fired generation demand. According to the US Nuclear Regulatory Commission, 14% of the country’s reactors were reported as non-operational as of 14 March.
ETHANE: lower at 29.25 cents/gal
Ethane spot prices weakened as buying activity remained thin in early trading, but the restart of a cracker and strengthening natural gas futures were providing upward support.
OLEFINS: ethylene trades wider at 51.00-51.75 cents/lb, PGP bids tighter at 69.50 cents/lb
US March ethylene traded four times at 51.00 cents/lb and once at 51.750 cents/lb on Friday, wider than a deal done at 51.625 cents/lb on Wednesday. US March polymer-grade propylene (PGP) was bid at 69.5 cents/lb against no fresh offers on Friday, compared with several deals reported on Wednesday ranging from 69.25-70.00 cents/lb.
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