US government shutdown bears down on oil prices

The US government shutdown meant Brent oil prices were bearish in the first part of last week according to ELN’s latest market report with npower. Magali Hodgson, Product and Services […]

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The US government shutdown meant Brent oil prices were bearish in the first part of last week according to ELN’s latest market report with npower.

Magali Hodgson, Product and Services Optimisation Manager for npower said the “question mark about [the US’s] debt ceiling and easing in the Middle East tensions” also helped to force prices down.

The market was volatile, with traders becoming bullish on Friday, when a number of oil platforms in the Gulf of Mexico shut down in anticipation of tropical storm Karen.

In the gas market the price of near term contracts was kept down, as there was “good flow from Langeled and demand was actually lower than the seasonal norm.”

Looking forward, short-term gas prices are likely to be pushed up, as temperatures drop back below the seasonal norm. However, extra flows are not far off, with three LNG tankers on the horizon.

“On the curve all of the signs will be coming from the US” as the government shutdown drags on and the “impending decision on their debt ceiling” draws ever closer.