The largest crude oil refiner in the U.S., Marathon Petroleum, shut three refineries while energy major Royal Dutch Shell and independent refiner HollyFrontier each shut one in 2020.
Operated by Shell, the Deer Park complex in Texas includes a petrochemical complex and it also refines crude from Africa, South America and the United States.
The refinery shutdowns will depress prices for U.S. crude oil and widen the spread between U.S. and Brent crude, Paul Sankey of independent energy researcher Sankey Research said.
The team said it was also in the process of meeting with members of President Joe Biden’s administration to brief them on the benefits of the proposed petrochemical plant in Ohio that will turn ethane into plastics.
It will take a while for the energy sector to get to its new ‘normal,’ says the EIA Acting Administrator in the U.S. agency’s annual outlook clouded by the COVID-19 pandemic.
The new ethylene storage tank will facilitate faster loading and enable the Morgan’s Point terminal, owned 50/50 by affiliates of Enterprise and Navigator, to reach an annual nameplate export capacity of 1 million tons per year
Crude oil inventories in the U.S. rose by 15.2 million barrels in the week to Dec. 4 to 503.2 million barrels, the largest build in crude inventories since April.
Magellan Midstream Partners said on Dec. 2 it will invest about $4.65 million to increase truck loading capacity at its refined oil products Cheyenne terminal in Wyoming by more than 50%.
The world witnessed the long-waited announcements related to successful trial results of several vaccines, which are the preliminary requisite for quick regulatory approvals that will then translate into mass production and distribution.
There are three additional variables which oil markets are not used to deal with in the fourth quarter: the current infections uptick in Europe, the U.S. presidential transition and announcements about new vaccines, all of them adding bearish or bullish pressure to prices over the next few months.