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Market Movers Europe, Dec 16-20: Commodity and energy markets brace in the run-up to 2020

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Ver: Market Movers Europe, Dec 16-20: Commodity and energy markets brace in the run-up to 2020

In this week's Market Movers we take a look at the potential impact on oil demand of the fast-approaching IMO sulfur cap in marine fuels; Russian President Vladimir Putin's annual press conference; and the likely sign-off by Germany's cabinet of the country's coal exit law on Wednesday.

Transcripción completa

In this week's Market Movers we take a look at the potential impact on oil demand of the fast-approaching IMO sulfur cap in marine fuels; Russian President Vladimir Putin's annual press conference; and the likely sign-off by Germany's cabinet of the country's coal exit law on Wednesday.

In London, oil markets are approaching the holiday season with some sense of optimism after last week's general election results somewhat quelled recent political uncertainty, prompting a bounce in share prices for mid-sized oil and gas companies.

But there is little sign of any uptick in oil demand entering the new year, with the International Energy Agency's latest oil market report on Friday predicting that global oil stocks will rise by about 700,000 b/d in the first quarter of next year.

The report also predicted that the International Maritime Organization's new cap on sulfur levels in bunker fuel from January 1 would result in a 4.6% drop in fuel oil demand globally next year, although there is uncertainty over whether producers have judged oil demand correctly, or whether there will be fuel oil supply shortfalls.

And that brings us to our social media question of the week: How do you think IMO 2020 will affect commodity markets? Send us your feedback by tweeting with the hashtag #PlattsMM.

This week's main news event, though, may well be Russian President Vladimir Putin's annual press conference on Thursday.

This marathon Q&A in the Kremlin is sure to throw up some energy-related questions, including whether Russia can agree gas-transit terms with its western neighbor Ukraine, with the current 10-year supply and transit deal expiring on December 31.

The mood music has improved after a face-to-face meeting between the two countries' leaders on December 9, but time is running out, and supplies to a number of European countries are at risk.

Chancellor Angela Merkel's cabinet is expected to sign off on Germany's coal exit law Wednesday, with the market focusing on how and when the government intends to cancel CO2 allowances linked to plant closures.

Up to 10 GW of capacity is set to close by 2022 - a huge cut in dispatchable power capacity that will reduce German export surplus and push prices up in Europe's biggest power market.

Several refineries in France continue to operate albeit at reduced runs this week, amid a nationwide general strike called by labor unions.

Deliveries of oil products from four out of the country's eight refineries were impacted by the action as of last week, although if the protests continue, all refineries may be hit and could eventually decide to halt units.

For now, there has been little impact on the oil products market, but tighter olefins supplies are expected as run rates at the Lavéra steam cracker, jointly owned by Total and Ineos, have been cut, limiting the amount of material that will come to market.

And that marks the end of this year's Market Movers series.

Our next Market Movers video will be on Monday, January 6.

From everyone at S&P Global Platts, we hope you have a great Christmas and New Year.

See you in 2020!