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Oil

London (Platts)--31 Jul 2014 217 pm EDT/1817 GMT
LyondellBasell, owner of Houston Refining LP, said Thursday that it has canceled any further purchases of "disputed" Iraqi crude oil after data published by the US Energy Information Administration on Wednesday indicated the Houston plant received two heavy Shaikan cargoes from the semi-autonomous Kurdish region of Northern Iraq in May.
London (Platts)--31 Jul 2014 759 am EDT/1159 GMT
The high sulfur fuel oil physical Med/North -- the premium of 3.5% FOB Med cargoes to 3.5% FOB Rotterdam barges -- crossed the $4.00/mt threshold Wednesday for the second time in a week.
Singapore (Platts)--31 Jul 2014 640 am EDT/1040 GMT
* Run rates at teapot refiners drop to 34.5% over July 24-30
London (Platts)--31 Jul 2014 507 am EDT/907 GMT
Shell CEO Ben van Beurden said Thursday, July 31 that the recent events around the Ukraine crisis, including the crash of flight MH17 and the subsequent US and EU sanctions against Moscow, were a "game-changer" from an international political, economic and trade point of view.
Washington (Platts)--30 Jul 2014 523 pm EDT/2123 GMT
Merger and acquisition activity in the oil and gas industry surged in terms of value and volume in the second quarter of 2014 compared with the second quarter of last year, PwC US said Wednesday.
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Natural Gas

Houston (Platts)--31 Jul 2014 602 pm EDT/2202 GMT
Apache plans to sell its 50% stake in Canada's Kitimat LNG and its 13% stake in Australia's Wheatstone LNG project in a move to reposition its portfolio toward growth in North American onshore liquids, the company said Thursday.
London (Platts)--31 Jul 2014 932 am EDT/1332 GMT
Gas prices on the Dutch and German trading hubs were stable to slightly weaker Thursday morning, as the focus edged away from concerns over events in Ukraine which have dominated recent sessions to center more on bearish supply and demand fundamentals.
Tokyo (Platts)--31 Jul 2014 459 am EDT/859 GMT
Japan's Hiroshima Gas has signed a sale and purchase agreement with Osaka Gas to buy 50,000-130,000 mt/year of LNG for 15 years starting in 2016, the two utilities said Wednesday.
Boston (Platts)--30 Jul 2014 441 pm EDT/2041 GMT
Southern Company's four regulated utilities are likely to get an increasing share of their power from natural gas-fired units over the next few months, Southern's top executive said Wednesday, citing lower gas prices in recent weeks.
London (Platts)--30 Jul 2014 943 am EDT/1343 GMT
European gas exchange PEGAS will expand its offerings to include spot contracts for the UK's NBP hub from October 15, the company said Wednesday.
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Electric Power

Washington (Platts)--31 Jul 2014 457 pm EDT/2057 GMT
The US nuclear power industry has so far spent about $3 billion taking actions and making plant modifications to address lessons learned from the 2011 Fukushima I accident in Japan, a utility official told the US Nuclear Regulatory Commission during a briefing Thursday.
Portland, Maine (Platts)--31 Jul 2014 350 pm EDT/1950 GMT
Xcel Energy has formed two transmission company subsidiaries to compete for projects in the Midcontinent Independent System Operator's southern region and in the Southwest Power Pool, a company executive said Thursday.
London (Platts)--31 Jul 2014 935 am EDT/1335 GMT
Power generation in the UK from renewables jumped 30% in 2013, with wind generating a record level of 30.5 TWh, according to the Department of Energy and Climate Change Thursday.
Portland, Maine (Platts)--30 Jul 2014 507 pm EDT/2107 GMT
While TransAlta is trying to secure off-take deals for the output of its coal-fired Centralia plant in Washington, the power producer doubts it will be able to sign any deals this year given uncertainty over the Pacific Northwest electricity market.
London (Platts)--30 Jul 2014 749 am EDT/1149 GMT
French prompt power prices climbed Wednesday on rising demand expectations and a lower nuclear availability outlook than previously forecast.
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Coal

Washington (Platts)--31 Jul 2014 227 pm EDT/1827 GMT
Rhino Resource Partners said that its Pennyrile mine in Daviess and McLean counties in Kentucky, began production in the second quarter, adding Illinois Basin coal to its existing Appalachian and Western bituminous coal operations.
London (Platts)--31 Jul 2014 928 am EDT/1328 GMT
The UK's consumption of thermal coal for electricity generation in May plummeted to its lowest in nearly three years on low demand and increased use of renewable fuels, according to data released Thursday by the Department of Energy and Climate Change.
Singapore (Platts)--31 Jul 2014 928 am EDT/1328 GMT
Large Chinese coal producer Shenhua's series of domestic price cuts and speculations of further price reductions amid limited demand from China and India had put more pressure on Indonesian thermal coal prices, sources said Thursday.
Houston (Platts)--30 Jul 2014 632 pm EDT/2232 GMT
Mild summer weather, not rail problems, is the biggest reason for softness in the US over-the-counter coal market, Ted O'Brien, an analyst with Doyle Trading Consultants said Wednesday.
Perth (Platts)--30 Jul 2014 714 am EDT/1114 GMT
A large producer and trader of Australian 5,500 kcal/kg NAR thermal coal was heard Wednesday to have off-loaded a large quantity of this maximum 23% ash fuel to Chinese power plants at $64/mt CFR South China, market sources in Asia said.
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Shipping

Washington (Platts)--31 Jul 2014 219 pm EDT/1819 GMT
The US Department of Energy on Thursday gave Oregon LNG conditional approval to ship 1.25 Bcf/d of liquefied natural gas to countries that do not have free trade agreements with the US.
London (Platts)--31 Jul 2014 703 am EDT/1103 GMT
The United Kalavrvta, a Suezmax tanker holding 1 million barrels of Kurdish crude valued at more than $100 million, remains anchored 60 miles off the port of Galveston, Texas.
Houston (Platts)--30 Jul 2014 334 pm EDT/1934 GMT
Togo has emerged this year as the primary destination for gasoline from the Gulf Coast-driven US export market, partly as a way to thwart pirates, according to US Energy Information Administration data and market sources.
London (Platts)--30 Jul 2014 711 am EDT/1111 GMT
Novorossiisk high sulfur bunker fuel spot prices reached a 10-month high for the second consecutive day Tuesday, rising to $480.50/mt on increased demand and a lack of prompt supply.
Singapore (Platts)--30 Jul 2014 710 am EDT/1110 GMT
Singapore ex-wharf 500 CST bunker fuel term contracts for August have been concluded at discounts of around $6-7/mt to the Mean of Platts Singapore 380 CST high sulfur fuel oil assessments, market sources said Wednesday.
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Petrochemicals

Houston (Platts)--31 Jul 2014 221 pm EDT/1821 GMT
Williams Olefins is restating its ethylene force majeure allocation, reducing its August sales allocation from 25% to 0%, multiple industry sources said Thursday.
London (Platts)--31 Jul 2014 705 am EDT/1105 GMT
An alternative settlement for the July contract price for paraxylene in Northwest Europe was agreed Thursday at Eur995/mt ($1,333/mt) FD NWE, up Eur65/mt from June, industry sources said.
Houston (Platts)--30 Jul 2014 332 pm EDT/1932 GMT
Formosa Plastics Corporation USA will seek to increase US polypropylene prices by 8.5 cents/lb ($187/mt) effective August 1, the company said in a letter to customers obtained by Platts on Wednesday.
London (Platts)--30 Jul 2014 615 am EDT/1015 GMT
Northwest European benzene's premium over naphtha is coming off the 16-week high hit in the middle of last week despite a bearish naphtha trend, due to the risk of slowing downstream demand and a weakening US market, according to sources.
Houston (Platts)--29 Jul 2014 1218 pm EDT/1618 GMT
US methanol distributor Southern Chemical decreased its domestic August methanol contract by 3 cents to $1.37/gal FOB US Gulf, the company said Tuesday in a letter to customers.
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Metals

Louisville, Kentucky (Platts)--31 Jul 2014 603 pm EDT/2203 GMT
Century Aluminum is to invest $3 million in expanding its 205,000 mt/year Sebree smelter in Kentucky as part of a plan to significantly increase the percentage of molten metal turned into premium products, it said Thursday.
Lima (Platts)--31 Jul 2014 459 pm EDT/2059 GMT
Newmont and partner Buenaventura are studying an underground development at the Yanacocha open-pit gold mine, Buenaventura CEO Roque Benavides said Thursday.
Singapore (Platts)--31 Jul 2014 933 am EDT/1333 GMT
China's stainless steel output rose 21.2% year-on-year to 10.69 million mt in January-June, according to data released Wednesday by the Stainless Steel Council of China Special Steel Enterprises Association (SSC).
London (Platts)--31 Jul 2014 738 am EDT/1138 GMT
The world of precious metals price setting was once again in the spotlight Thursday on the back of news that The London Platinum and Palladium Fixing Company Limited is looking for a third party to administrate the daily London platinum and palladium fixes.
Singapore (Platts)--31 Jul 2014 647 am EDT/1047 GMT
China's ex-works Henan spot alumina price edged up Thursday as market sentiment improved with domestic metal prices rising back above Yuan 14,000/mt ($2,270), and spot supply tightened.
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Agriculture

Washington (Platts)--31 Jul 2014 225 pm EDT/1825 GMT
With the 2014 Renewable Fuel Standard indefinitely delayed, the US Environmental Protection Agency on Thursday said it would extend the compliance deadline again for the 2013 rule.
Houston (Platts)--30 Jul 2014 123 pm EDT/1723 GMT
US ethanol stocks rose 647,000 barrels to a 16-month high of 18.587 million barrels in the week that ended July 25 despite a slight decline in US ethanol production, which dipped 5,000 b/d to 954,000 b/d, US Energy Information Administration data showed Wednesday.
Houston (Platts)--29 Jul 2014 431 pm EDT/2031 GMT
The relationship between feedstock soybean oil and blendstock heating oil that the US biodiesel industry uses to gauge costs and margins fell to its lowest level in nearly six months on Tuesday.
Houston (Platts)--28 Jul 2014 422 pm EDT/2022 GMT
The least volatile two-week stretch in US ethanol pricing in the last four years came to an end Monday as values moved up slightly.
Houston (Platts)--25 Jul 2014 122 pm EDT/1722 GMT
US production of biomass-based diesel in June surged 4.42 million gallons from May to a 2014-high of 149.079 million gallons, US Environmental Protection Agency data showed Friday.
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