This Critical Oil Price Divergence Could Boost US Exports

23 Aug 2017   exports, Prices, USA

The gap between the two most important oil benchmarks has widened recently, a symptom of the shifting oil supply/demand dynamics between the U.S. and the rest of the world. For the past few years, Brent and WTI have traded very closely together, as both benchmarks reflect the crushing weight of oversupply. Prior to the market downturn in 2014, the spread between the two benchmarks was dictated much more by geopolitical whims. Brent, which reflects market conditions in Europe, the Middle East, Africa and parts of Asia – in essence a more internationally-oriented marker – rose and fell more sharply on geopolitical events. WTI, on the other hand, closely tracked U.S. conditions. The dynamics were most visible during the Arab Spring back in 2011, when oil prices around the world spiked. The oil market was already tight, and fears of supply outages – and not just fears, but real outages, […]

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