Pradhan tells OPEC: India expects 'reasonable' crude oil price


In what was a volatile session, oil prices made a positive start to the week as oil infrastructure shut down in the Gulf of Mexico in preparation for Hurricane Nate started returning to service as Hurricane Nate weakened and moved inland. The prospective restarts kept price gains in check.

In a blog post yesterday, the US State Department said increased Indian purchases of US crude oil are a direct outcome of the June visit of Modi to the White House during which the leaders committed to expanding and elevating bilateral energy cooperation through a Strategic Energy Partnership. This adds up "to a massive total of nearly 800,000 bpd" in cuts, it said.

Meanwhile, Opec Secretary-General Mohammad Barkindo stoked expectations of an extension to the output-cut agreement deal beyond the March 2018 deadline, assuring market participants that talks concerning a possible extension were underway.

"I have already floated a new formula, a preliminary proposal, and I hope, over the next few weeks and months, to flawless it, to receive proposals, listen to those who disagree and to those who agree - a free, creative, integrative debate", said Maduro.

The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries is due to meet in Vienna on November 30, when it will discuss the impact of its global deal to rein in output.

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Maybe the key will lie in the simplistic philosophy he put forward when asked about his first impressions of Delhi, one he would no doubt sell well to his young wards.

He also mentioned OPEC members and other producers may have to take some extraordinary measures to ensure the market is in balance in the long term.

In a speech to the Reuters Global Commodities Summit on Monday, Barkindo said he saw clear evidence the oil market was rebalancing.

Buying US crude has become attractive for Indian refiners after the differential between Brent (the benchmark crude or marker crude that serves as a reference price for buyers in western world) and Dubai (which serves as a benchmark for countries in the east) has narrowed. It ended last week 3.3 percent lower, its biggest weekly loss since June 2017.

Oil exchange traded products, including the United States Oil Fund (NYSEArca: USO), which tracks West Texas Intermediate crude oil futures, and the United States Brent Oil Fund (NYSEArca: BNO), which tracks Brent crude oil futures, have recently been trying to cobble together some momentum, but at least one price point remains pivotal to oil's near-term fortunes.

India's oil consumption surged 11 percent in 2016 to the most on record as rising income levels spurred greater use of cars, trucks and motorbikes.