Latin America waits to assess options from potential expanded US crude exports

Platts’ Richard Capuchino has spent the past few months speaking with upward of 40 entities as part of Platts’ Structured Market Engagement Program. He entered into many discussions about the Americas crude market, and here he shares what he learned about how Latin American markets could respond to possibly expanded US crude exports.

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London loses golden touch as China’s build-up of bullion continues apace

London, the traditional home/hub of the world’s gold trade, could be slowly losing its grip on power as more and more of the world’s physical gold moves from London’s vaults to Asia, chiefly China.

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In the maelstrom of oil price news, has bias triggered trading mistakes? Petrodollars

In this week’s Oilgram News column, Petrodollars, Ned Molloy asks the question, have emotions and confirmation bias triggered trading mistakes in the maelstrom of oil price news?

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The low-down on base metals: prices remained under pressure in June

In June, base metals remained under pressure with the Greek debt crisis overshadowing sentiment and contracts traded on the London Metal Exchange testing fresh multi-month, and in some cases, multi-year lows.

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US steel welcomes the dawn of a new era of protection

Gay marriage: Legal.

Obamacare: Affirmed.

Trade Promotion Authority: Granted.

With the Confederate flag coming down or off the shelves in many locales as well, last week was watershed week in US history.

To American steelmakers, these historic developments may pale in light of the industry’s own achievement: a legislative change that encourages it to file more unfair trade cases.

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Viewing global LNG from the House at Pooh Corner, where Eeyore lives

Ross McCracken, managing editor of Energy Economist, shares what the world of LNG would look like to an unabashed pessimist . . . or maybe just to someone who eyes the massive production boom on the horizon with some concern.

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PDVSA’s operational decline mirrors decline in employee benefits

The decline in employee benefits at Venezuela’s state owned PDVSA is the latest sign of the crisis being experienced by the country’s oil sector, which is under pressure from the drop in oil prices, declining output, industrial accidents, as well as by hyper- inflation suffered by the country.

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Bragging rights: So who is the world’s top oil producer?

Earlier this month, BP’s latest Statistical Review unintentionally reopened a debate into whether the US has regained the crown as the world’s top oil producer after decades of being out-gunned by Saudi Arabia and Russia.

Ostensibly a straight-forward measure of which country tops the leaderboard on oil output, BP’s widely-read yardstick has the US eclipsing both Saudi Arabia and Russia for the first time last year since 1975. Fueled by booming shale oil, BP said, US oil output hit 11.64 million b/d last year, a narrow but decisive margin over Saudi Arabia’s 11.51 million b/d.

The devil is in the detail, however, and BP’s numbers raise the long-standing and slippery issue of what actually counts as oil.

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Quantifying crude in Russia proves complicated: At the Wellhead

In this week’s Oilgram News column, At the Wellhead, Nadia Rodova digs beyond the scant information about Russian oil production and gives more clues about the true state of the industry there.

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Gimme some sugar: Looking for some sweet news for one of agriculture’s cornerstones

There’s a war being waged that you can’t fail to have noticed. The focus is an allegedly addictive white powder that has been with us for centuries, but is attracting ever greater ire from politicians, governments and health campaigners. For some producers active in the industry, many of them based in exotic locations like South and Central America, they are unaccustomed to such attacks, and are struggling to counter the bad press and occasionally hysterical calls to stamp out their industry. And it’s all coming at a time when business just isn’t as profitable as it used to be — and there’s precious little sympathy on show.

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