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Asian crude traders optimistic for June trading as OPEC+ cuts production
4/13/2020 12:00:00 AM

Benchmark Dubai crude futures gained ground in midmorning trading hours in Asia Monday, shortly after marathon OPEC+ talks, which began Thursday via webinar, concluded late Sunday night with the 23-member coalition agreeing to 9.7 million b/d production cuts through May and June this year.

At 11 am (0300 GMT) Monday morning in Singapore, June Dubai futures were pegged at $34.48/b, 6% higher than the $32.52/b assessed at Thursday's close of trading in Asia.
The June Brent/Dubai Exchange Futures for Swaps, which had recently flipped into a premium for Brent futures over Dubai, slid back into negative territory as Dubai gains outpaced a muted reaction in Brent futures over the OPEC+ cuts announcement.
As of 11 am in Singapore, June Brent futures were pegged at $32.85/b, barely moving from the 12:30 pm (0430 GMT) level at $32.93/b assessed on Thursday.
The June Brent/Dubai EFS was pegged at minus $1.63/b Monday morning, down from 41 cents/b assessed at Thursday's Asian close.
Traders of Middle East crude in Asia sounded hopeful that spot price differentials of June loading cargoes would receive a boost following the production cuts, after prices slid into deep discounts over the past few months as demand lagged several million b/d behind oversupply in the region.
Spot price differentials of key crude grades traded in Asia, such as Abu Dhabi's Murban, may climb up from current valuations that peg the grade below $2/b versus its official selling price, said traders.
"ADNOC adjusted production [after OPEC cut] would go from 4.1 million b/d to 2.4 million b/d," said a source with equity in the emirate's crude production of Murban.
"Of course, we need to see OSPs but [the value could go up to] discounts of around $1/b," the source added.
However, several other crude market participants said they would rather wait for Middle East producers to release OSPs for the current cycle before commenting on the direction for spot prices this month.
The Middle East sour crude market in Asia will trade cargoes loading in June from the Persian Gulf. Trading is expected to kick off next week, after delays in the release of OSPs while OPEC+ talks carried on in recent days.
Saudi Arabia, OPEC's largest producer and the world's biggest crude exporter, will hold its output at 8.5 million b/d, down almost 30% from the record 12 million b/d it said it was producing this month.
The kingdom is expected to take the lead in issuing OSPs for its term customers in Asia, Europe and Americas for May loading cargoes, with most market participants expecting Saudi OSPs to be announced sometime on Monday.
Source: SP Global