Tue, 05/14/2019 - 17:47 -- admin

Trump doubles tariffs on China, markets wait. The U.S. hiked tariffs on $200 billion of Chinese goods from 10 to 25 percent on Friday, while leaving open the possibility that trade talks could continue. Trump also began the process of new tariffs on another $325 billion in Chinese imports.


China vowed to implement retaliatory measures. “The opportunity window for avoiding a trade war is closing fast,” Citigroup wrote in a note to clients. Global financial markets were largely stable on Friday, suggesting that major investors still think that a resolution can be reached. “Our base case remains that the U.S. and China will eventually reach some kind of accord,” said Mark Haefele, global chief investment officer for the Swiss bank UBS, in a note.


U.S. shale running into trouble. As the sweet spots in the U.S. shale patch become crowded, it may be more costly and difficult to keep production elevated, according to a new report. While drilling techniques have succeeded in growing output, the industry may simply be front-loading production.


Oil prices firm up on bullish EIA report. Crude inventories fell and oil production also dipped in the most recent report from the EIA. That ended a string of inventory increases and offers some evidence that the market is not oversupplied. Oil fundamentals diverge from prices.


Brent crude futures have opened up a steep backwardation, evidence that the physical market for crude is tightening. Yet, spot prices have fallen in the last two weeks, and analysts are puzzled at the discrepancy. “There is no true sign of weakness in the physical market,” Olivier Jakob, managing director of consultant Petromatrix GmbH, told Bloomberg. “You have lower exports from Venezuela, you’ve got sanctions for Iran, Libya which is still a risk.”


Iran oil exports falling amid escalating tension. The U.S.-Iran conflict escalated this week, with rhetoric on both sides growing more heated. Iran said it would withdraw from parts of the nuclear deal, and top U.S. officials hinted at a military response. Washington also imposed sanctions on metals exports from Iran.


Iran warned the EU to step up incentives or else it will fully withdraw from the 2015 accord. Meanwhile, Iran’s oil exports are plunging. Saudi Arabia to keep oil exports below 7 mb/d in June.


Saudi Arabia is holding firm on oil exports despite the tightening market. Saudi oil exports are expected to remain below 7 mb/d in June, with production also below the OPEC+ ceiling.

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