Iranian Crudes Trading at $44-46 pb

Iranian Crudes Trading at $44-46 pb
Iranian Crudes Trading at $44-46 pb

Iran's light crude blend traded $46.31 per barrel in the week ending on June 24, having gained 79 cents over the week. Iran's heavy crude also settled 76 cents higher at $44.30 a barrel.

The rebound comes as futures for Iran's light and heavy crude this year have averaged at around $36 and $34 per barrel respectively, ISNA reported.

OPEC basket settled at $46.95 in the same period after a weekly gain of 86 cents.

According to OPEC's latest official report, the price of OPEC basket of 13 crudes stood at $46.27 a barrel on Thursday, compared with $45.82 the previous day.

OPEC Reference Basket, or OPEC basket, is a weighted average of prices for petroleum blends produced by OPEC members. It is used as an important benchmark for crude oil prices.

The benchmark includes Iran's main blend, known as Iran Heavy, as well as Saudi Arabia's Arab Light, Qatar Marine and Basra Light, among others.

Global crude benchmark Brent was up 68 cents at $50.40 a barrel on Friday, while US West Texas Intermediate crude settled 1.37% higher, or 66 cents, at $48.99 a barrel and posted a quarterly gain of 28%. Markets are closed for trading on the weekend.

From above $100 per barrel in mid-2014, oil bottomed out at $26 per barrel in January, its lowest level in more than a decade, forcing massive shutdowns and layoffs across the oil industry.

An initiative between OPEC and non-OPEC producers to freeze oil production to drum up prices also ended in failure, but unexpected supply disruptions in Canada and Nigeria, due to wildfire in the first and internal conflicts in the second, pushed prices to above $50 range, the highest level in more than seven months.

Meanwhile, oil market reacted strongly to the UK vote on June 23 to leave the European Union as Brent and WTI futures slumped nearly 6% the day after the referendum. But fears about the impact of Brexit appear to have been priced in, as prices have steadied over the past week.

Some analysts and officials say it is nearly impossible for the volatile crude market to return to its former glory.

In an interview this week, Iranian Oil Minister Bijan Namdar Zanganeh said a stronger market will allow higher-cost producers, including shale companies in the US and Canada, to resume production, which will in turn push prices downward and pare any gains.