Oil prices soared as Libyan riots continued – Weekly recap 21-25 February

The riots in Libya continue and the UN Security Council just voted to sanction Qaddafi for the crimes against humanity he is committing on the Libyan people.

This turmoil raised the level of instability in the Middle East and consequentially made many oil traders anxious as crude oil price soared mainly at beginning of last week.

Here is a weekly recap for February 21st to 25th on the main changes in crude oil price, recapping the highlights on petroleum stocks, production and consumption in the US and the news from the Middle East:

Crude oil price

table crude oil price - 21-25  February

* This figure is calculated based on the percent change from the price at the beginning of the week compare to the price at the end of the week

Crude oil price (WTI spot) weekly average rose by 10.9% to reach 93.3$/b compare to last week’s average price of 84.13$/b. On average, crude oil price (WTI) daily change was 2.72%, and its price inclined by 14.05% from beginning to end of the week.

The crude oil price WTI ranged between 96.98 $/b and 85.03 $/b – a range of 11.95$/b, which is three times higher than last week’s range.

NYMEX Futures Price (future for March) much like WTI spot price, rose by 4.31% from beginning to end of the week as it settled on 97.88 $/ on Friday .

These figures show that WTI (spot and future) rose very precipitately during the week.

Europe Brent spot price, also inclined by 4.37% from beginning to end of the week, and its average weekly price was 109.46$/b which is 6.5% above last week’s average.

The gap between the Brent and WTI spot prices was on Friday 15.11$/b – the highest gap all week. As the upcoming week will progress, we will see if there is a trend in closing the gap between the two spot prices.

Crude oil charts

The following charts show the changes of WTI spot price, NYMEX Futures Prices (future for February) and Europe Brent spot price:



Crude oil charts - 21-25 February

The chart above shows that all in all Brent price had a shallow downward trend while WTI had a shallow upward trend, however this is only part of the picture.

The final graph shows crude oil price (WTI spot, WTI future, Brent spot) daily percent change for this passing week:

Crude oil charts - percent change 21-25  February

The graph above shows the erratic behavior I have referred to before, in which you can see many shifts throughout the week in the prices of oil.

Petroleum Stocks –highlights:

In my recent review on last week’s EIA report petroleum stocks, consumption and production in the US, oil stocks, continued falling for the second straight week after rising for five weeks straight earlier; last week they have declined last week by 0.7%, a decrease of nearly 12 million barrels of crude oil to reach 1,784 million barrels.

The average US productions (million of barrels a day) was 5.595 on a four week average, higher than last week by 1.3%, and also higher by 2.4% compare to the average production at the same time last year;

Crude oil imports has decreased for the week of February 18th (4 week average) by 3.6% compare to the week of 11/2/2011, and also declined by 0.3% compare to last year’s same time.

For the complete petroleum stocks, consumption and production review see here.

For further reading (in this site):


Previous issues of weekly report: