Taking their cues from a slowing growth in the Chinese refining sector and rising shale output in the US, the global oil market slightly weakened on Monday.
In what should cheer crude producers, the International Energy Agency has forecast that oil demand growth will be stronger than expected this year.
India’s state oil refiners – long focused on churning out transport and cooking fuels – are planning a $35 billion push into petrochemicals to meet an expected surge in demand for goods ranging from plastics to paints and adhesives.
Oil and Natural Gas Corp. plans to tap the debt market for the first time, an opportunity that may be hard to pass up for bond bulls.
Oil futures inched down on Thursday despite official figures showing U.S. crude inventories fell more than expected, with an analyst saying the market had settled into a range.
Oil held around $52 a barrel on Wednesday as an industry report showing a large drop in U.S. crude stocks countered doubts that compliance with OPEC-led supply cuts will increase.
Global benchmark Brent crude futures were down 18 cents, or 0.3 percent, at $52.19 a barrel by 0038 GMT after dipping 0.1 percent in the previous session.
Oil prices marginally softened on Monday but still hovered near nine-week highs on the back of last week’s strong US jobs numbers and a slight fall in drill rig count, though the upward movement was resisted by rising Opec output.
Facing a depressing prospect on oil revenue front, Saudi Arabia has drawn up ambitious plans to diversify its economy away from crude.
China’s fast-growing refining capacity has fueled its crude demand, raising the prospect that the Dragon might soon replace the US as the world’s biggest oil importer.