International Maritime Associates (IMA) is a firm of business consultants specializing in market analysis and strategic planning for companies in the marine and offshore sectors.
April 15, 2017Jim McCaul -- Orders for production floaters have finally begun to flow. The break came early this year when contracts for a production semi for use in the GOM and an FPSO for use off Malaysia were awarded.
December 12, 2016Jim McCaul -- Donald Trump’s presidential win and Republican sweep of the US government in November – along with OPEC’s oil production cuts in December -- have injected new dynamics into the US energy
April 28, 2016Jim McCaul -- No question that the market for new floating production systems has taken a battering. The past 12 to 18 months have been a difficult period for everyone in the business sector. Absence of
by Jim McCaul 16 January 2019
US crude inventory continued its downward trajectory last week. The EIA weekly survey results for the week ending 11 January indicated a decline of 2.7 million barrels in US crude inventory -- the seventh week in a row with a decline or no change.
But US crude inventory remains 8% above the five year average for this time of year, suggesting supply continues to exceed demand.
Globally, crude in floating storage has been increasing. According to ClipperData, 100 million bbls of crude was stored on tankers as of 6 January, an increase of 51% over last month and 31% higher than same time last year.
But there are indications that crude supply is beginning to decrease. US shale producers have cut back on production, crude imports in the US over the past four weeks are down 3.6% from last year and tanker tracking data indicate a decline in Saudi crude shipments.
Meanwhile, Brent crude as of 16 January is trading around $61 -- not much change from a week ago.
The fear of crude prices dropping into the $40s or lower has faded. Market sentiment has turned positive -- for the time being.
Most analysts expect that the OPEC+ supply curtailment deal will ultimately rebalance supply and demand and provide support for higher oil prices. The Saudis are targeting getting crude prices back to the $80 range. This could happen if supply is kept under tight control and the Chinese economy remains solid.
And while a global demand slowdown continues to be a near term possibility -- which would keep crude prices (and capital investment decisions) under pressure -- a slowdown seems less likely than a few weeks ago.
Jim is the founder and manager of IMA, a consulting firm providing market analysis, competitive benchmarking and business planning support in the maritime and offshore sectors. Over the past 40 years IMA has performed more than 350 business consulting assignments for 170+ clients in 40+ countries.
One of the firm’s specialties is analyzing requirements for floating production systems. IMA has published more than 60 reports since 1996 analyzing this business sector and has been engaged by numerous clients to assist in analyzing specific market opportunities in the floating production sector.
Jim is also the co-founder of IMA/World Energy Reports, a New York based business intelligence service for the floating production supply chain.