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My family and I are on vacation this week, but The Propane Buzz always has its eye on what is going on. Here is what I have seen from this weekend and today that I think would be of interest and or some importance to you as you begin your week…
CRUDE OIL FACES A MONTH OF MAYHEM AS GEOPOLITICAL RISKS ARE HIGH: That’s the headline from this Bloomberg.com article. Here is the lede paragraph: “Plunging Venezuelan crude production; sanctions disrupting Iranian oil exports; Saudi Arabia pushing for even higher prices; North Korea peace talks — the coming weeks bring an abundance of risks for the oil market.”
Fun times. This is a year, pursuant to propane contracting for the upcoming demand season, that will require a steady and patient hand and test the nerves of many.
This is a very good article for you to add to your reading list today, as there are a number of key factors at play right now that could push the markets higher, or if tensions ease, take things lower.
WTI IS HIGH: WTI crude values have topped $70/bbl in Monday morning trading, reaching three-year highs. Brent crude values are threatening $76/bbl as well. The WTI to Brent spread will help to keep the trading arb open for United States sourced propane exports, but I have heard of May export cargo cancellations. This is definitely something that deserves more monitoring.
CORN PLANTING: Corn saw a decent jump during Week 17, as seen in the chart below from Kevin Van Trump. At that particular point in time, compared with previous years, we still see the planting pace behind the five-year normal. Much of the corn belt saw a decent amount of rain last week, which will likely keep the 2018 planting season behind pace. There will be a USDA update late today that will provide an update to these numbers.