TOP Oil Market News: Brent Crude Rises With Libya Ports Closed

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

Brent Rises Most in Almost Two Weeks as Libya Ports Stay Closed

Brent crude advanced the most in almost two weeks after Libyan rebels refused to hand over control of three oil ports to the government.

CRUDE AND OIL MARKET NEWS

Libya’s Oil Sales Constrained as Eastern Ports Remain Shut (3)

A Libyan rebel leader refused to hand over control of three oil ports to the government, spurring the biggest gain in benchmark crude prices in almost two weeks as the North African nation’s exports stayed constrained.

Mexico Ending Oil Monopoly Seen Drowning North America in Crude

The flood of North American crude oil is set to become a deluge as Mexico dismantles a 75-year-old barrier to foreign investment in its oilfields.

South Sudan Oil Production Not Affected by Fighting: Makol Arik

Foreign oil cos continue to produce, South Sudan Foreign Ministry spokesman Mawien Makol Arik says in phone interview from capital, Juba.

Indian Oil Said to Buy 4m Bbl WAF Crude From Total, Sonangol

Refiner buys 1m bbl each of Angolan Nemba, Nigerian Usan grades from Total via 2nd tender for Feb.- loading crude, say three traders who participate in market, asking not to be identified because information is confidential.

Gasoil ARA Supplies Fell 2.5% in Week to Dec. 6, Genscape Says

Gasoil inventories dropped 2.5 percent in Amsterdam, Rotterdam, Antwerp and Vlissingen in the week ended Dec. 6, according to estimates from Genscape Inc. for northwest Europe’s oil-storage hub.

IOC Seeks Naphtha; Petrolimex Buys Gasoline: Asia Naphtha

Indian Oil seeks to buy total of 30,000 mt naphtha for Jan., Feb. delivery to country’s west coast. Petrolimex buys gasoline.

REFINERIES Map global refinery outages

Total Not Supplying Fuel From All French Refineries Amid Strike

Total SA, France’s biggest oil company, is not supplying fuel from all five of its refineries in the country amid a workers strike that has led to two facilities halting production, according to a labor union.

Russian Oil Refineries Secondary Unit Shutdowns, Repairs (Table)

The following table shows scheduled repairs and shutdowns of secondary units at Russian oil refineries as of Dec. 11, according to the Energy Ministry’s CDU-TEK central dispatch unit.

Iraq’s Baiji Refinery Unharmed as Al-Qaeda Gunmen Attack Police

One gunman, 3 policemen killed in al-Qaeda attack on police station in Baiji, north of capital Baghdad, according to police statement.

Idemitsu Plans to Halt Tokuyama Naphtha Cracker From Sept.-Nov.

Idemitsu Kosan Co. plans to shut its Tokuyama ethylene plant from September to November, a company official said. He asked not to be identified, citing internal policy.

Idemitsu Plans Maintenance at Hokkaido Refinery in June-July

Idemitsu plans to carry out some maintenance at Hokkaido refinery in northern Japan from June to July, says co. official who asked not to be identified, citing internal policy.

Reliance to Shut Jamnagar Refinery CDU in February: Reuters Link

To see the Reuters story, click http://tinyurl.com/mzlmxv2

TOP ENERGY STORIES

BP Signs Accord to Develop $16 Billion Oman Gas Project (1)

BP Plc, Europe’s second-biggest oil company, signed an agreement with Oman to develop the $16 billion Khazzan tight-gas project.

Hedge Funds’ Natural Gas Bets Jump as Thermometer Drops: Energy

Hedge funds got more bullish on natural gas, betting the most on rising prices in 11 weeks as cold weather in the U.S. diminished fuel inventories.

Trafigura Weighs Sale of Stake in Impala Amid Squeeze on Margins

Trafigura Beheer BV, the closely- held commodities trader, will consider selling a stake in its Impala warehousing and logistics unit as it looks to reap gains from its investments in infrastructure.

German Energy Brief Move Shows Merkel Putting Focus on Economy

Chancellor Angela Merkel’s new cabinet sends a message on her priorities for the biggest shift to clean-energy of any developed country: Nurturing Germany’s economy takes precedence over the drive to renewables.

Gazprom Leads Eighth Weekly Drop as Oil Slumps: Russia Overnight

Russian stocks traded in New York are posting the longest stretch of weekly declines since June 2012 as OAO Gazprom follows oil lower amid concern the Federal Reserve will cut U.S. monetary stimulus.

Shell Exiting Woodside Seen Opening Door to China Bids: Real M&A

Royal Dutch Shell Plc’s long-awaited sale of its $6.4 billion stake in Woodside Petroleum Ltd. may open the door for Asian buyers to grab a slice of Australia’s second-largest oil and gas producer, or even the whole company.

OTHER MARKETS

European Stocks, Euro Strengthen After Manufacturing; Gold Drops

European stocks rose for the first time in five days, the euro strengthened and gold fell after the region’s manufacturing exceeded economists’ forecasts. U.S. equity index futures advanced.

Dollar Drops Before Fed Starts Meeting on Tapering; Euro Climbs

The dollar declined against the euro and the yen as investors assessed U.S. economic data to gauge when the Federal Reserve will start to slow monetary stimulus.

Speculators Most Bullish Since October Before Drop: Commodities

Speculators got the most bullish on commodities since October, buying more gold, cotton and soybeans, before prices fell the most in six weeks on signs of surplus supply.

Gold Funds See Unprecedented 31% Slump With World Losing Faith

Investors are dumping gold-backed exchange-traded products at the fastest pace since the securities were created a decade ago, mirroring the steepest price drop in 32 years.

Copper Reaches Six-Week High as Premium Signals Limited Supply

Copper reached a six-week high in London as the widest premium in 18 months for metal for immediate delivery indicated supplies are limited.

Merkel Begins Third Term Strengthened by SPD Partner Backing (1)

Angela Merkel begins her third term as German chancellor this week buttressed by the overwhelming support of her Social Democratic coalition partner and with her veteran finance minister, Wolfgang Schaeuble, at her side.

Fifteen States Press Obama for Tough, Flexible EPA Climate Rules

Fifteen states that have taken steps to reduce greenhouse gas emissions are seeking assurances that their efforts will be recognized when the U.S. Environmental Protection agency issues new rules governing pollution from power plants.

SPORTS

Newton, Defense Lift Panthers Past Jets 30-20

Cam Newton threw for 273 yards and a touchdown, Captain Munnerlyn had two sacks and returned an interception for a score and the Carolina Panthers defeated the New York Jets 30-20 on Sunday.

Seahawks 23, Giants 0: Drubbing by Seahawks Assures Giants of a Losing Record

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. — In the locker room Sunday, moments after the Seattle Seahawks thrashed his Giants, 23-0, Coach Tom Coughlin took the blame for the humiliating defeat.

Brazil World Cup Seeks Haitian Migrants Amid Worker Shortage (1)

A company building one of the 12 stadiums for next year’s soccer World Cup in Brazil is recruiting Haitian workers after falling months behind schedule.

Sharapova Is Back in the Game and as Driven as Ever

BRADENTON, Fla. — What can be learned over a long December lunch with Maria Sharapova, in a nearly empty Italian chain restaurant where the waiters try to play it cool as they refill the drinks without asking her to autograph the coasters?

ENERGY PRICES

                         Last     Chg  %Chg   Exch  Contract
                         ----    ----  ----   ----  --------
WTI Crude ($/Bbl)       97.14   +0.54  +0.6  Nymex      Jan.
Brent Crude ($/Bbl)    109.90   +1.07  +1.0    ICE undefined
Gasoil ($/Ton)         932.75  +15.00  +1.6    ICE      Jan.
Gasoline (c/Gal)       265.65   +2.72  +1.0  Nymex      Jan.
Natural gas ($/MMBtu)    4.26   -0.10  -2.2  Nymex      Jan.
Dated Brent ($/Bbl)    109.48   +1.05  +1.0    OTC   21 Days
Heating Oil            302.25   +4.68  +1.6  Nymex      Jan.

Other markets:
                         Last  %Chg
                        ----- -----
Dollar Index         1,015.00  -0.2
Gold ($/Oz)          1,230.02  -0.7
MSCI World Index       392.51  +0.2

Prices as of 12 p.m. London time

To contact the reporter on this story: Bruce Stanley in Dubai at bstanley5@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Stephen Voss at sev@bloomberg.net

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