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10 December 2023

Oil rises after Russia signals output cut

By Bloomberg

Oil rallied to a three-week high and clinched a second straight weekly gain after Russia warned it may cut output by as much as 700,000 barrels a day in response to sanctions on the nation’s crude.

With trading volumes dwindling heading into the Christmas holiday, Russia’s threat outweighed the impacts of a winter freeze sweeping across the US. The cold has halted one-third of refining capacity on the Texas Gulf Coast and as much as 350,000 barrels a day of crude output in North Dakota.

Gasoline futures also rose to the highest in three weeks following the refinery outages, though supply is in good shape: Gulf Coast gasoline stockpiles are at a record high for this time of year, and diesel inventories are above normal as well.

Crude is still on track for a modest yearly gain after a volatile year where Russia’s attack on Ukraine upended oil markets.

The invasion led Group of Seven countries to imposed a $60 a barrel price cap on Russian crude in an effort to reduce the Kremlin’s income while keeping exports on the market.