The latest talks over the RFS resulted in the announcement that the Trump administration will allow E15 gasoline to be sold year-round. Although policy details remain unclear, this development will move the RIN market into surplus, reduce D6 RIN prices, increase blending of ethanol into the gasoline pool at the expense of petroleum based components, and temper the recent crude-led rise in gasoline prices.
East Coast drivers could be putting Russian gasoline into their fuel tanks without even knowing it. Already strong imports of blending components like naphtha will be paired with gasoline after Soviet refining tax breaks and investments give Russia surplus fuel to sell. Exports into Europe and the U.S. Atlantic basins will rise by 75,000 barrels a day, Energy Security Analysis, Inc. principal Andrew Reed says.
After pressure from the investment community, many US independent Shale producers aggressively hedged 2018 production in 2017 in order to ensure or slightly improve their capital position. Those hedges are now limited the upside of US Shale Producers. Please read ESAI Energy’s Elisabeth Murphy’s interview with Energy Intelligence’s Deon Daugherty.
There remains a lot of uncertainty regarding what comes next after the U.S. Treasury reinstates economic sanctions on Iran and the possibility of exemptions or some sort of “special treatment” to allies in Europe.
But for now, U.S. research and consulting firm ESAI Energy forecasts the sanctions will reduce Iranian crude oil exports by roughly 300,000 barrels per day (BPD) by late this year.