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by Stockwatch Business Reporter
West Texas Intermediate crude for July delivery added $2.02 to $73.66 on the New York Merc, while Brent for August added $1.39 to $74.90 (all figures in this para U.S.). Western Canadian Select traded at a discount of $13.88 to WTI, unchanged. Natural gas for July lost two cents to $3.19. The TSX energy index added 6.28 points to close at 140.95.
Oil prices headed higher as traders weighed the implications of Iran's federal election on Friday. The victor was Ebrahim Raisi, a hard-line conservative judge who is under U.S. sanctions over alleged human rights violations. Having a president-elect under sanctions could, of course, complicate Iran's current efforts to talk the United States into lifting sanctions against various Iranian industries, including oil. This lowered the odds of a near-term boost in Iranian oil exports and therefore sent prices higher. Prices got an additional boost from a bullish new Bank of America forecast. In a research note yesterday, BofA Global Research predicted that "robust global oil demand recovery will outpace supply growth over the next 18 months." It hiked its 2022 Brent forecast to $75 (U.S.) from $60 (U.S.) and mused that Brent might even touch $100 (U.S.) for the first time since 2014.
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