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Watch: Market Movers Asia, Nov 5-9: All eyes on US sanctions on Iran

The US is about to grant waivers on Iranian oil imports to key Iranian crude buyers in Asia, including South Korea, the region's largest buyer of Iranian condensate. US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo did not identify the recipients of the waivers but it is expected that China and India will also receive waivers.

The Trump administration's expected hard-line sanctions enforcement was a main driver of higher crude prices in late August and September. While prices have eased since then, the sanctions are expected to remain a key factor affecting oil markets.

In shipping, freight markets are bullish due to weather-related long port delays and as the loading for the third decade of November begins.

In coal, the market is expecting spot prices for Newcastle 6,000 NAR thermal coal -- looked upon as a benchmark grade for the Asian market – to sink below $100/mt FOB. Demand for spot cargoes is slowing as many Japanese, Korean and Taiwanese buyers have already covered their needs for the fourth quarter.

View Full Transcript

The highlights this week: All eyes on US sanctions on Iran, freight rates are rising and thermal coal suffers poor demand.

First in oil, Iranian sanctions are topping headlines. The US is about to grant waivers on Iranian oil imports to key Iranian crude buyers in Asia, including South Korea, the region's largest buyer of Iranian condensate. US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo did not identify the recipients of the waivers but it is expected that China and India will also receive waivers. The European Union as a whole will not get a waiver.

Sinopec is the biggest importer for Iranian crude oil and condensates. Industry participants are assessing the impact of US' waivers to allow India and China to keep importing Iranian crude and South Korea to continue importing Iranian condensate after sanctions go back into force on November 5.

The Trump administration's expected hard-line sanctions enforcement was a main driver of higher crude prices in late August and September. While prices have eased since then, the sanctions are expected to remain a key factor affecting oil markets.

The social media question of the week is – Will China continue to buy the same amount of Iranian crude as they did in the past?

Share your thoughts on Twitter with the hashtag PlattsMM.

In shipping, freight market participants are bullish due to weather-related long port duration and as loading for the third decade of November begins.

The key Persian Gulf to China route spiked to a new high at 100 Worldscale points, with increased loading demand. Refiners are seeking alternatives due to the US sanctions on Iran.

In coal, the market is expecting spot prices for Newcastle 6,000 NAR thermal coal -- looked upon as a benchmark grade for the Asian market – to sink below $100/mt FOB.

Demand for spot cargoes is slowing as many Japanese, Korean and Taiwanese buyers have already covered their needs for Q4.

And that's if for this week. Thanks for kicking off your Monday with us. Have a great week ahead!