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Energy Watch

Energy Watch

Global refinery capacity at its limit without Russia

In this Energy Watch, we argue that the refining stage of the petroleum product supply chain could become a bottleneck in crude oil supply getting through to end users in the coming months. Russia’s seaborne petroleum product exports have roughly halved since the start of the war in Ukraine, meaning the rest of the world’s already-stretched refinery capacity has got more refining to do to keep up with product demand. Assuming Russia’s product exports only partially and slowly recover, unplanned refinery outages will be a bigger than usual downside risk to our crude oil demand and price forecasts. Refinery constraints also imply petroleum product prices will command historically high premiums over crude oil prices for some time.

31 May 2022

Energy Watch

Central and extreme scenarios for coal and natural gas

In this Energy Watch, we look at what the war in Ukraine means for the thermal coal and natural gas markets in 2022. Under our central scenario based on existing Western sanctions, we think Russian coal and gas exports will fall, but we suspect that the global coal market will be less affected than the gas market. Under our extreme scenario of the West completely banning Russian energy exports and/or Russia unilaterally halting its energy exports, there would be limited supply elsewhere to compensate.

Commodities Drop-In (24 March, 11:00 EDT/15:00 GMT): Our Commodities team will be exploring how the war in Ukraine is shaking up commodity markets, from oil to wheat, while tackling some of the big market questions – not least whether we’re in for 1970s-style oil supply shocks. Register here.

23 March 2022

Energy Watch

China managing a coal market trilemma

In this Energy Watch, we look at what recent policy changes mean for China’s coal market. The main take-away is that the changes should increase Chinese coal production and temper demand growth in 2022. This should lead to a slightly larger global coal market surplus, weighing on coal prices.

16 November 2021
More Publications

Energy Watch

Latest natural gas price surge will unwind

At the time of writing, global natural gas prices are soaring. Dramatic moves in global natural gas prices are nothing new and not even very surprising given the extreme weather over the past year or so. In this Energy Watch, we consider earlier spikes in natural gas prices and discuss whether this time is different.

In view of the wider interest, we are also sending this Energy Watch to clients of our Commodities Overview service.

1 October 2021

Energy Watch

Oil prices would still fall even if OPEC expands

In this Energy Watch, we discuss the future of OPEC and its role in the oil market. While we suspect that its membership may expand, we think that its ability to influence oil prices will fall over time and that oil prices in real terms will decline steadily over the coming decades.

Energy Watch

How the American Jobs Plan could affect commodities

In this Commodities Watch, we take a first look at some of the most important features of President Joe Biden’s $2 trillion infrastructure package, known as the American Jobs Plan, from a commodities perspective. The upshot is that even if it is passed in its current form (which we think is unlikely), we doubt there would be much of an impact on prices in the near term. Further ahead, we think the effects of the Plan would only really be felt in a handful of commodity markets, including coal, natural gas, cobalt and nickel.

Energy Watch

A closer look at the Indian oil sector

In this Energy Watch, we examine the outlook for India’s oil sector. We begin by outlining its importance in the context of our macroeconomic research, before considering how the demand and supply side of the sector are likely to evolve in the years ahead.

23 February 2021

Energy Watch

What if travel restrictions are not eased later this year?

In this Energy Watch, we discuss a key risk to our forecast of a further rise in oil prices by year-end, namely the possibility that insufficient progress on vaccine rollouts and/or concerns over new variants of the virus cause travel restrictions to remain in force for longer than we have assumed.

4 February 2021
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