Saudi Arabia, the world’s biggest oil exporter, cut June pricing for all crude grades to the U.S. and raised most pricing to other regions.
The kingdom’s pricing appears to be aimed at easing concerns over supplies to the U.S. after the Trump Administration ended waivers for buyers of Iranian oil, while still benefiting from rising demand for its crude in Asia and Europe.
- Flagship Arab Light grade rises 70 cents to $2.10 a barrel over the Oman-Dubai benchmark, the biggest spread for the grade since July.
- Analysts in a Bloomberg survey expected the premium to be $2 a barrel.
- June pricing follows increases in Asia for May, reflecting short supply of heavy crudes in market.
- Saudi Arabia is the first Gulf producer to release forward pricing each month and many countries price their crudes off of Aramco’s.
- OPEC and its allies are committed to reducing supply of the heavy, high-sulfur grades that Saudi Arabia and other Gulf producers pump. U.S. companies are boosting supply of lighter grades from shale deposits.
- Aramco raised pricing to all buyers in Asia and Northwest Europe, and boosted pricing for most grades to the Mediterranean region.
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