News & Analysis - Oil
Demand for hydrous ethanol in Brazil is booming, with the biofuel becoming more competitive than gasoline and bouncing back to demand levels on par with December 2009. Summer driving season is about to kick off in the US, where refiners are cranking up capacity to churn out more gasoline. The US, China and Venezuela are part of a shifting "love triangle" centered on crude imports and exports. Could the US rekindle its relationship with the Latin America country, once the largest source of US oil imports? The North Sea crude oil market showed mixed signals May 15, with Dated Brent versus second-month cash up $0.21/barrel at minus $0.94/b, even as Forties came off a touch.
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US investment bank Goldman Sachs cut sharply Monday its forecasts for average oil prices in 2015 but said sliding US shale production could see the global oil market rebalance by the end of the year. Goldman said it expects Brent crude to average $50.40/b a barrel from $83.80/b, as global oil price continue to their rapid descent into near six-year lows. WTI is expected to average $47.15 a barrel, down from a previous forecast of $73.75/b, the bank said.
It could be argued that the history of oil is the history of the modern world. And Platts, a leading provider of analysis, news and prices for the industry, has played a significant role in this amazing story.
Of all the natural resources that have been used to build our world, surely oil is the most pervasive. We all know that oil provides the plastics in the computer we use, has driven revolutions in fashion, industry and transport, and even powers our homes. No one's life is untouched by this immense resource.