Energy Correspondent, London
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Feb 18, 2013

Platts proposes changes to Brent benchmark

LONDON, Feb 18 (Reuters) – Oil pricing agency Platts has
proposed changes to the way it assesses the Brent oil market
following calls from the industry for a sweeping reform to
improve liquidity and transparency of one of the world’s most
important oil benchmarks.

At stake is the credibility of North Sea Brent, the
price-setter for billions of dollars of daily trade in crude.
The benchmark is based on the dwindling supply of four North Sea
crude grades, which critics say makes it prone to manipulation
and can lead to higher oil prices.

Feb 4, 2013

Europe’s surviving gasoline-focused refineries get late boost

LONDON, Feb 4 (Reuters) – A rush by Europe’s refiners to
switch to making diesel may have gone too far too fast, meaning
the remaining gasoline-focused plants can prolong their lives by
supplying rapidly growing Latin American and African markets.

As gasoline consumption has declined in Europe and the
United States, refiners have been investing heavily in diesel
production and closing gasoline units.

Jan 31, 2013

Oil refinery work may curb Forties flow to S.Korea

LONDON, Jan 31 (Reuters) – North Sea Forties oil exports to
South Korea, a specialised trade that has supported crude
prices, may drop in coming weeks due to maintenance at
refineries, potentially weakening a source of support for Brent
oil prices.

The flows – a result of a trade pact with the European Union
- became a common feature of the North Sea market in 2012 and
often support prices since Forties is part of the Brent oil

Jan 30, 2013

IKEN Capital rolls out high-performing commodity fund

LONDON, Jan 30 (Reuters) – Commodity funds have mostly been
a graveyard for investment returns since 2009, yet London-based
asset manager IKEN Capital’s new fund has bucked the trend in
its first six months.

Using a combination of algorithmic and relative value
strategies while hedging out macroeconomic risk, the Commodity
Alpha Fund is up over 7 percent since its “soft” launch in June
2012, having navigated tricky third and fourth quarters in which
many commodity funds were hard hit.

Jan 24, 2013

Oil holds above $112 on upbeat China PMI data

LONDON, Jan 24 (Reuters) – Brent crude oil prices held above
$112 a barrel on Thursday, supported by upbeat manufacturing
data from China and Germany, but U.S. crude stocks remained in
focus after capacity in the Seaway pipeline was reduced.

Brent crude futures for March delivery were down 18
cents at $112.62 a barrel by 0939 GMT, underpinned by positive
economic activity data from China and the eurozone. A stronger
dollar was applying downward pressure to offset this.

Jan 21, 2013

Top commodity managers tip metals for Q1 on Chinese recovery

LONDON, Jan 21 (Reuters) – Commodity fund managers who
performed well over the testing final quarter of 2012 believe
metals commodities prices could do better than expected in early
2013 due to a combination of Chinese restocking and continued
supply disruption.

Managers at Vescore, Investec and BasInvest, who were
amongst the few to make money in the fourth quarter, are
relatively optimistic about the outlook for commodities going
into 2013, tipping copper, platinum and palladium.

Jan 16, 2013

British North Sea oil output seen at 1977 levels this year

LONDON, Jan 16 (Reuters) – A major stoppage of North Sea oil
production serves as a stark reminder of ageing infrastructure
and a lack of investment in new developments, which is seen
reducing Britain’s oil output to 1970s levels in 2013.

The total shutdown of the Brent pipeline system on Tuesday
has once again highlighted the challenge facing North Sea
producers trying to extract the last drops of oil from dwindling
mature fields.

Dec 19, 2012

Rising Rhine water stops shipping, delays commods

HAMBURG/LONDON, Dec 19 (Reuters) – High water levels have
stopped shipping on part of the Rhine, delaying deliveries of
gasoline, heating oil and other commodities into Germany and
Switzerland, and even if it reopens later on Wednesday, barges
will still have to go slowly.

As a result, gasoline and heating oil stocks could begin to
build up at the Amsterdam-Rotterdam-Antwerp hub, pressuring
prices, although this will also depend on the amount of cargo
activity in and out of ARA over the week.

Dec 17, 2012

North Sea oil output to fall in January

LONDON, Dec 17 (Reuters) – North Sea crude oil output from
12 large production streams tracked by Reuters is expected to
fall by 11 percent in January, which may help to support Brent
crude oil futures prices.

Output is set to average 1.8 million barrels per day (bpd)
based on the loading schedules compiled by Reuters on Monday,
down from 2.03 million bpd in December.

Dec 12, 2012

Oil rises above $108 as more monetary stimulus eyed

LONDON, Dec 12 (Reuters) – Brent crude oil rose above $108 a
barrel on Wednesday supported by expectations of a fourth round
of monetary stimulus from the U.S. Federal Reserve later in the
day, although concerns about oversupply and weak demand limited

Brent crude futures were up 60 cents to $108.61 a
barrel by 0950 GMT, rebounding from last week’s dip. U.S. crude
was up 43 cents to $86.22 a barrel.

    • About Claire

      "At Reuters I am an energy correspondent covering the oil markets and investment trends in commodities. Prior to this I focused on the asset management industry. Before joining Reuters I edited Global Investor, a monthly magazine for the institutional investment industry, and Portfolio International, a magazine for the offshore funds industry."
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