March 11, 2020 / 5:04 PM / 4 months ago

Med crude-Urals differentials unchanged amid market caution

MOSCOW, March 11 (Reuters) - Urals differentials were unchanged on Wednesday as cautious market participants avoided deals in fast changing markets.

* Saudi Aramco said it has been directed by the Ministry of Energy to raise oil production capacity to 13 million barrels per day (bpd) from 12 million bpd.

* Urals crude oil remained under pressure due to Saudi Arabia’s price cut.

* Traders awaited the first loading dates for Urals in April to be released next week.

* Brent crude contracts for nearby delivery dropped on Wednesday to their biggest discount against the six-month forward contract LCOc1-LCOc7 in more than four years, Refinitiv data showed.

PLATTS WINDOW

* There were no bids or offers for Urals, CPC Blend or Azeri BTC in the Platts window on Wednesday, traders said.

NEWS RELATED

* Oil prices fell on Wednesday after Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates announced plans to boost production capacity and OPEC and the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) cut oil demand forecasts because of the coronavirus outbreak.

* OPEC cut its forecast for global growth in oil demand this year and said more revisions might follow, underlining the deepening impact of the coronavirus on the market days after a pact on output cuts collapsed.

* Royal Dutch Shell is in talks to charter at least three supertankers to store crude oil at sea as traders brace for a sharp rise in global stocks after OPEC and its allies abandoned a production cut deal, shipping sources said on Wednesday. (Reporting by Olga Yagova; Editing by Alexander Smith)

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