Iran offers up 6 MMbbl of oil with dismal results

By Arsalan Shahla on 4/14/2019

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Photo: Iran pump jack.

DUBAI (Bloomberg) — As Iran struggles to sell 6 MMbbl of oil, only one deal has closed for 35,000 bbls, so far.

Iran’s oil production and exports have slumped after the U.S. reinstated sanctions last year, and new curbs are set to further restrict its exports. Exemptions for importing countries including Japan, China, Turkey, India and South Korea have partially cushioned the blow.

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U.S. oil waivers that rocked market in 2018 coming back to focus

By Bloomberg News on 3/15/2019

SINGAPORE and BEIJING (Bloomberg) — Uncertainty over U.S. waivers for buyers of Iranian oil is starting to grip the market again, under very different circumstances than when American sanctions were set to go into effect last year.

Before existing exemptions were granted in early November, Saudi Arabia was pumping at record levels, benchmark Brent futures rose to a four-year high, traders were predicting $100 oil, and Donald Trump was seeking lower fuel prices ahead of U.S. mid-term elections. The waivers blindsided the market, which had assumed America would bring Iranian exports to zero, and sparked a 40% collapse in crude.

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India circumventing U.S. oil sanctions on Iran

By Santosh Kumar, Debjit Chakraborty and Pradipta Mukherjee on 12/19/2018

NEW DELHI and KOLKATA (Bloomberg) — India will use escrow accounts of five Iranian banks held with UCO Bank to deposit money for oil purchases from the Middle East producer to overcome U.S. sanctions, according to people with knowledge of the matter. 

Iran will use part of the deposits for purchasing essential goods from India and to meet expenditure incurred by its diplomatic missions in the South Asian nation, the people said, asking not to be identified because the information isn’t public. All spending will be in Indian rupees.

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Saudi Arabia juggles Iran and U.S. shale to deliver OPEC deal

By Javier Blas and Jack Farchy on 12/9/2018

LONDON (Bloomberg) — Saudi Arabia’s energy minister emerged from days of heated OPEC talks joking that he wasn’t an easy man to be friends with.

Yet, the deal Khalid Al-Falih hammered out to reduce production by 1.2 MMbopd, which sent oil prices soaring on Friday, was based on Saudi Arabia shouldering the lion’s share of the cuts. It also relied, to an unprecedented extent, on Russia to broker an agreement between the Saudis and their arch-rivals, Iran, and acknowledged implicitly that there’s little the kingdom could do to hurt surging U.S. oil shale without causing itself pain.

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OPEC+ recommends oil cuts, but no deal yet on size of curbs

By Annmarie Hordern, Grant Smith and Javier Blas on 12/5/2018

LONDON (Bloomberg) — Saudi Arabia, Russia and other members of the OPEC+ group recommended an oil production cut, defying a Twitter plea from President Donald Trump to keep the taps open, but their meeting didn’t agree on how big any reduction should be.

The group secured the participation of Russia for six months of output curbs starting in January, Oman’s Oil Minister Mohammed Al Rumhy told reporters in Vienna as he left the meeting on Wednesday.

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Iran oil waivers: How buyers are lining up after U.S. exemptions

By Heesu Lee, Sharon Cho and Tsuyoshi Inajima on 11/23/2018

SEOUL, SINGAPORE TOKYO (Bloomberg) — Armed with waivers to keep importing Iranian oil without running afoul of U.S. sanctions, some of the Islamic Republic’s top customers are preparing to buy.

The exemptions mean at least some supplies from OPEC’s third-biggest producer will keep flowing into international markets, after its exports plunged almost 40% since April — the month before Washington announced the curbs. In a bid to keep customers, the state-run National Iranian Oil Co. has been offering record discounts on its crude.

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Oil’s rapid run of declines kicks up pressure as OPEC gathers

By Jessica Summers on 11/9/2018

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Photo: OPEC flag.

NEW YORK (Bloomberg) — It’s all eyes on OPEC as U.S. oil prices fell for 10 consecutive days, wiping out any gains for the year.

Futures in New York slid 0.8% to settle at $60.19/bbl on Friday, a day after falling into a bear market on concerns growing supplies will overwhelm the market, as the U.S. offered nations waivers to continue buying Iranian oil. The plunge will push OPEC and its allies into a corner as they gather in a highly-anticipated meeting this weekend that could yield a signal on future production cuts.

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