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DJ Saudi Aramco Raises US, European Oil Sale Prices in Signal of Tightening Market

· 02/05/2021 08:00

By David Hodari

Saudi Arabian Oil Co. on Thursday left the price at which it will sell oil to Asia in March unchanged, while raising all selling prices for the U.S. and Europe, highlighting the improving demand and tightening market fundamentals that have boosted oil prices in recent days.

The state-run company, also known as Saudi Aramco, left all prices for Far East Asia unchanged, holding its Arab light crude oil at a $0.30 cents-a-barrel premium to the Oman/Dubai average. Some investors and analysts had expected Aramco to cut its prices for Asia given a recent increase in coronavirus cases in major economies such as China.

However, dropping coronavirus infection numbers in Europe and falling U.S. oil inventories, together with optimism around the rollout of vaccination programs, have added to enthusiasm around OPEC+ compliance rates to spur an oil price rally in recent days. At 1245 GMT, Brent crude oil was up 1.2% at $59.54 a barrel--close to fresh 12-month highs--and WTI futures were up 1.2% at $56.88 a barrel. Both benchmarks are on course for respective gains of 8% and 9% this week.

Aramco raised all of its prices to the U.S. by $0.10 cents a barrel, leaving its light crude at a premium of $0.75 a barrel to the Oman/Dubai average.

The company raised its price for oil sold to Northwest Europe to $1.40 a barrel and increased the price to the Mediterranean by $1.30 a barrel, leaving light crude sold to the two regions with discounts of $0.50 and $0.20 a barrel, respectively.

Write to David Hodari at david.hodari@wsj.com

(END) Dow Jones Newswires

February 05, 2021 08:00 ET (13:00 GMT)

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