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TOP Oil Market News: WTI Surges to Highest in Month on Cyprus

The following is a selection of the most important news affecting the oil market.

WTI Oil Rises to One-Month High on Cyprus; Brent Spread Narrows

West Texas Intermediate crude rose to the highest in a month as Cyprus agreed on an international bailout, allaying concern that Europe’s debt crisis will worsen. WTI narrowed its discount to Brent to the least since July.

CRUDE NEWS

Iraq to Fall Short of 2014 Target for Oil Output, Lawmaker Says

Iraq, the second-largest producer in OPEC, won’t reach its target of pumping 4.5 million barrels of oil a day by next year and plans to announce revised production goals in April, senior government officials said.

Kuwait Oil Minister Says Market is a ‘Little’ Oversupplied

Kuwait “generally happy” with oil prices at moment, Hani Hussain tells reporters.

Russian Baltic Sea Urals Crude Oil Exports to Jump 20% in April

Russia plans to ship 1.95 million barrels a day of Urals crude from two export terminals on the Baltic Sea in April, according to a preliminary loading program obtained by Bloomberg News.

Iraq to Boost Kirkuk Crude Oil Exports to 19 Cargoes in April

Iraq plans to increase exports of its Kirkuk crude in April from the Turkish port of Ceyhan to 19 cargoes, nine more than this month, according to a loading program obtained by Bloomberg News.

Libya Raises April Es-Sider Oil Price to 5 Cents Premium (1)

Libya’s state-run National Oil Corp. increased its official selling price of benchmark Es Sider crude for April to a premium of 5 cents a barrel over Dated Brent, up from parity in March, according to a price list obtained by Bloomberg News.

Nigeria Delays One Okono Crude Cargo to Load in May, Plan Shows

Nigeria, Africa’s largest oil producer, will export one cargo of its Okono crude in May, the same number as for next month, according to a loading program obtained by Bloomberg News.

Nigeria to Boost Forcados Crude Exports in May to Nine Cargoes

Nigeria, Africa’s largest oil producer, will increase exports of its Forcados crude to nine cargoes in May, three more than in April, according to a loading program obtained by Bloomberg News.

Hedge Funds Raise ICE Brent Crude Net-Longs by 6,982 Last Week

Hedge funds and other money managers raised bullish bets on Brent crude by 6,982 contracts in the week ended March 19, according to data from ICE Futures Europe.

Crude Official Selling Prices and Formulas by Country (Table)

The following table shows official prices, formulas and relative values for crudes from the Middle East, Asia, Africa and the Americas. Figures represent outright prices in dollars a barrel, or premiums and discounts to regional benchmarks where plus and minus symbols appear.

REFINERIES

Map global refinery outages

TOP ENERGY STORIES

Sinopec Joins China Peers in Posting Lower Full-Year Profits (1)

China Petroleum & Chemical Corp., Asia’s biggest refiner, joined PetroChina Co. in posting lower 2012 profits, as the nation’s largest energy companies look to overseas growth to counter the impact of price controls at home.

Centrica Buys U.S. Gas in 20-Year Deal as U.K. Output Wanes (1)

Centrica Plc, the U.K.’s largest household energy supplier, signed a 20-year deal to import natural gas from the U.S., securing supplies as production from British North Sea fields decline.

Russia Lets China Into Arctic Oil Rush as Energy Giants Embrace

Russia’s decision to give China a share of prized Arctic exploration licenses as part of a “breakthrough” deal signals how the world’s largest oil and gas producer and the biggest energy consumer are redrawing the global energy map.

Bullish Natural Gas Bets Surge as Fuel Hits $4: Energy Markets

Hedge funds boosted bullish bets on U.S. natural gas to a record, pushing the fuel above $4 for the first time since September 2011, as a late-winter cold snap increased heating demand and cut into a stockpile surplus.

NRG Skirts Utilities Going Straight to Power Consumers: Energy

NRG Energy Inc., the biggest power provider to U.S. utilities, has become a renegade in the $370 billion energy- distribution industry by providing electricity directly to consumers.

China Thermal Coal Supplies Rise to 32-Week High as Price Slides

Power-station coal stockpiles at China’s largest port for the fuel rose to the highest level in 32 weeks as prices slid to a three-year low.

Chinese Utilities Face $20 Billion Costs Due to Water, BNEF Says

China’s five largest power utilities are heavily exposed to water supply disruptions and face costs of as much as $20 billion to curb the risk, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.

OTHER MARKETS

European Stocks Advance as Cyprus Reaches Agreement on Bailout

European stocks climbed, rebounding from a weekly loss, as an overnight rescue deal between Cyprus and euro-area finance ministers lowered the nation’s risk of default and an exit from the currency union. U.S. index futures and Asian shares also rose.

Euro Pares Advance Amid Qualms After Cyprus Deal; Yen Weakens

The euro pared its advance against the dollar amid concern that a deal to bail out Cyprus won’t be enough to eliminate the threat of default and stave off contagion to other euro-region nations.

Copper Falls in London as China’s Usage May Slow; Lead Advances

Copper declined in London on speculation China’s government will take steps to slow inflation, curbing metals demand.

Gold Falls in London as Equities Climb After Cyprus Agreement

Gold declined in London, following a three-week rally, as equities climbed after Cyprus agreed with euro-area finance ministers on a rescue package.

Cyprus Salvaged After EU Accord Shuts Bank in Euro Bailout (2)

Cyprus dodged a disorderly default and unprecedented exit from the euro by bowing to demands from creditors to shrink its banking system in exchange for 10 billion euros ($13 billion) of aid.

Hedge Funds Most Bearish Ever on Copper, Favor Gold: Commodities

Hedge funds are making the biggest bet against copper on record as global inventories expand to a nine-year high, while concern that Europe’s debt crisis will spread spurred the biggest gain in gold bets since 2008.

Risk Unrewarded as Emerging Stocks Lag Behind Most Since ’98 (1)

The link between risk and reward in stocks is breaking down as emerging markets post the worst first quarter since 2008 and lag behind shares of developed economies by the most in 15 years.

SPORTS

Florida Gulf Coast Makes NCAA History as a 15th Seed in Final 16

Florida Gulf Coast University made college basketball history as the first No. 15 regional seed to reach the final 16 at the National Collegiate Athletic Association men’s tournament, where the Eagles are joined by traditional powers Indiana, Kansas and Duke.

Tiger Woods’s Chase to Regain Golf’s No. 1 Rank Delayed by Storm

Tiger Woods’s bid to return to the top of golf’s world rankings was delayed a day by a thunderstorm and tornado warning that suspended play at the Arnold Palmer Invitational, where he’s pursuing an eighth win.

Yankees’ Derek Jeter Is Set to Miss First Opening Day Since 2001

Derek Jeter will probably miss Major League Baseball’s Opening Day for the first time in 12 years as the New York Yankees’ shortstop and captain is set to start the regular season on the disabled list.

Elvis Dumervil Joins NFL’s Ravens After Six Seasons With Broncos

Pro Bowl defensive end Elvis Dumervil agreed to a five-year contract with the Super Bowl champion Baltimore Ravens after totaling 63 1/2 sacks in the six seasons he played with the Denver Broncos.

ENERGY PRICES


Energy Prices:
                         Last    Chg  %Chg   Exch Contract
                         ----   ----  ----   ---- --------
WTI Crude ($/Bbl)       94.13  +0.42  +0.4  Nymex      May
Brent Crude ($/Bbl)    108.35  +0.69  +0.6    ICE      May
Gasoil ($/Ton)         908.00  +7.00  +0.8    ICE      May
Gasoline (c/Gal)       308.55  +2.30  +0.8  Nymex    April
Natural gas ($/MMBtu)    3.95  +0.02  +0.6  Nymex    April
Dated Brent ($/Bbl)    108.19  +0.88  +0.8    OTC  21 Days
Heating Oil            289.93  +1.50  +0.5  Nymex    April

Other markets:
                         Last  %Chg
                        ----- -----
Dollar Index            82.38    --
Gold ($/Oz)          1,608.00  -0.5
MSCI World Index     1,437.17  +0.3

Prices as of 12 p.m. London time

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Raj Rajendran at rrajendran4@bloomberg.net

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