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CRUDE MOC: Dubai cash/futures spread seen rangebound on steady fundamentals

New York — The cash/futures spread for benchmark Dubai crude is likely to stay rangebound in the near term, with market fundamentals stabilizing for the time being, trade sources said July 13.

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The spread was assessed at a premium of $1.14/b on July 13, down by 12 cents/b from the Asian close on July 9, S&P Global Platts data showed.

"If you look at [volume] allocations it's pretty much the same as last month or perhaps just a slight dip," a Singapore-based crude oil trader said.

"Market conditions look the same, with demand not seeing a huge improvement... some refineries [in Asia] are still on maintenance or running at lower rates," the trader added.

While the Dubai cash/futures spread has seen some day-on-day fluctuations, the spread remains rangebound, Platts data showed. The spread has averaged $1.14/b in July so far, similar to the assessment on July 13.

Meanwhile, the Platts Market on Close assessment process saw three 25,000-barrel September Dubai partials traded on July 13, bringing the total number of partials traded in July so far to 19.

Spot market activity for the sour crude market was still thin, with volume allocations from Saudi Aramco just out over the weekend, sources said.

The market was also keeping a close watch on an OPEC+ meeting scheduled for July 15. The OPEC+ alliance is likely to stick to its timeline of paring back its landmark production cuts in August, sources have told Platts.

The OPEC+ alliance had instituted a 9.7 million b/d cut accord in May, but expects to move to the next phase of the deal, which calls for cuts of 7.6 million b/d starting in August as scheduled instead of extending them, the sources said.

The key Joint Ministerial Monitoring Committee, co-chaired by Saudi Arabia and Russia, the two largest members of the coalition, will convene online July 15 and make a final recommendation.