Saturday, November 28, 2015

Asia's Perspective On Oil As OPEC Meeting Draws Near -- November 26, 2015

From Bloomberg/Rigzone:
Oil buyers in Asia are sure of one thing as OPEC prepares to meet: They’ll emerge as winners from the group’s rift over production.

Members of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries will gather Dec. 4 in Vienna, where Iran has said it will announce plans to boost production by 500,000 barrels a day. That may further lift the 12-member group’s output, which has exceeded its target for 17 months. The increase in volumes would exacerbate a global glut and benefit the biggest oil- consuming region’s refiners, which are seeking cheaper sources of crude.

OPEC is forecast to stick with its strategy of defending market share by maintaining output and driving down higher-cost production elsewhere, according to analysts and traders surveyed by Bloomberg . That’ll leave members including Saudi Arabia free to continue pumping even amid calls from Iran to make room for its extra supply after international sanctions over its nuclear program are lifted.

“This is probably the best time we’ve ever had as a buyer,” said Kim Woo Kyung, a spokeswoman for SK Innovation Co., South Korea’s largest refiner. “We are enjoying an overflow of oil.”

OPEC has exceeded its output target of 30 million barrels a day since June 2014 as it pumps near record amounts of crude, boosted by increases from its biggest members, Saudi Arabia and Iraq. The group’s strategy to defend market share has helped lift refining margins for Asian processors, who have been treated to a steady flow of cheap cargoes from the Middle East to Mexico, Nigeria and Russia.

Profits from turning crude into naphtha, which is used to produce gasoline as well as petrochemicals, surged to $9.42 a barrel this month, the highest level since at least May.  Purchasing costs for refiners have slumped. Japan, Asia’s second-biggest oil consumer, spent an average of $51.22 a barrel in September for supplies, down from $113.47 in January 2014.
Much more at the link.

A Note to the Granddaughters

What seven classic novels have to say about the stages of life, from Edward Mendelson's The Things That Matter, c. 2006. Here are the seven classic novels:
  • Frankenstein, Mary Shelley
  • Middlemarch, George Eliot
  • Mrs Dalloway, Virginia Woolf
  • To The Lighthouse, Virginia Woolf
  • Between The Acts, Virginia Woolf
  • Wuthering Heights, Emily Brontë
  • Jane Eyre, Charlotte Brontë
Sweeping Up

In anticipation of her grandmother coming home later this week, Sophia is sweeping the kitchen floor.

Sweeping Up

Week 47: November 22, 2015 -- November 28, 2015

There is no evidence of global warming here in North Texas; I had to turn on the heat to take off the chill, but the furnace -- or whatever it is that provides heat in these small apartments -- is now off and it's a comfortable 67 degrees. Last night, over at my daughter's McMansion it was way too warm; they have the thermostat set at 71 degrees. They were gone for the weekend and I took advantage of the opportunity to watch some football on their big screen television.

Wow, that was a digression. All I had planned to do was link the only story I plan to post with regard to all the excitement and hyperbole that will surround the 2015 Paris Peace Talks on Global Warming, where every western leader will be padding his or her resume to hopefully contend for the 2016 Nobel Peace Prize.

The article, of course is  -- in fact, put this much in google: your complete guide to the climate debate -- see how few letters you have to put into the search box to get the WSJ article to show up. You will be surprised. I put in this much: your complete g and the article was the first hit. I didn't even get past the "g." I've read enough of it to tell me it is all I need to post on the 2015 Paris Peace Talks on Global Warming. The only reason folks will be tuning in is to see if ISIS (or as President Obama calls the JV team, ISIL) is able to crash the party.

The link to the WSJ article: I hate to think this is the 144,865,890th article the WSJ has had on the climate debate.

I suppose the big story of the week was the fact there is a glimmer of hope that Saudi Arabia has decided to hold the line at $40. Unfortunately, the fly in that oily soup is the fact that there are more than 1,000 wells waiting to be fracked in North Dakota and probably twice that many in Texas.

At the very end of the week, a reader sent me a fairly reliable hint that Shell United States is coming to North Dakota. I have problems with Shell. I really don't know whether it's Shell, or Royal Dutch Shell, and until the spill in the Gulf of 2010, I kept confusing BP and Shell. But whatever, at least someone has credible information to suggest "Shell" will enter the Bakken in a big way. I have a post on it in draft but won't post it until the credible information is ... well, a bit more credible. I don't want to get anyone into trouble.

So, what were the big stories last week? Not many. Perhaps the highlight was the autumn portfolio of North Dakota / Minnesota photographs sent by Vern Whitten.

Lime Rock Resources finally posts their Russian Creek acquisition
October's North Dakota oil production remained flat month-over-month
a second bench Three Forks well looks very promising
a birthday greeting to Mr Woodrow Star "A" 1, 57 years young

EIA posts an update on flaring in North Dakota 

Proposed Devils Lake refinery on hold

I formally added "propane" to the "next big story" page; it's been there all along but a bit hidden
the US officially gets on the top ten list of countries with proved oil reserves 
the US increased its proved reserves estimate for sixth year in a row
Katie Ledecky named female athlete of the year -- a three-peat
North Dakota's shortfall grows