Oil rises amid surging China crude imports

Published May 8, 2019, 12:00 AM

by manilabulletin_admin

SINGAPORE (Reuters) – Oil prices rose on Wednesday as U.S. sanctions on crude exporters Iran and Venezuela as well as ongoing supply cuts by producers have left markets tight just as crude imports to China rose to a record for April.

U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures were at $61.96 per barrel at 0658 GMT on Wednesday, 56 cents, or 0.9 percent, above their last settlement.

Brent crude oil futures were at $70.31 per barrel, 43 cents, or 0.6 percent, above their last close.
With U.S. sanctions on Iran and Venezuela in place, analysts said global oil markets remained tight.
“The tight and price-supportive fundamental outlook has not gone away,” said Ole Hansen, head of commodity strategy at Denmark’s Saxo Bank.

China’s crude oil imports in April rose to a record for the month of 10.64 million barrels per day (bpd), according to data from the Chinese General Administration of Customs released on Wednesday. That is an 11 percent rise from the same month last year. The country is the world’s largest oil importer.

China’s imports during the first four months of the year averaged around 10.03 million bpd, up 8.9 percent from the same period a year earlier, the data showed.