TransCanada Restarts Keystone Oil Pipeline After Recent Leak in Missouri

A section of TransCanada’s Keystone oil pipeline has been restarted after a leak of about 43 barrels of crude occurred in Missouri earlier this month forcing the company to shut service on the pipe, company spokesman Terry Cunha said.

Keystone pipeline system allows the flow of 590,000 bpd taking Canadian crude from northern Alberta to refineries in the U.S. Midwest.

Following a leak of 43 barrels of crude oil, TransCanada had shut an arm of Keystone from Steele City, Nebraska to Patoka, Illinois on February 6th.

A spokesman for U.S. regulator PHMSA said that the line was restarted with a 20 percent reduction of pressure.


World Bank: Oil Prices to Average $65 a Barrel in 2018

Oil prices are expected to average $65 a barrel this year due to rising consumer demand and continued cuts from OPEC, according to the World Bank.

The World Bank said in its April Commodity Markets Outlook that its expectation for the average oil price this year is backed by "global growth and rising demand" as well as "greater compliance by the OPEC and non-OPEC producers" with production cuts.

An average of $65 a barrel is a big jump from the $53 per barrel average in 2017.

The World Bank also added that policy actions currently under discussion add uncertainty to their outlook.

Circumstances that could cause upward pressure on oil prices include possible constraints to U.S. shale production, geopolitical tension in many producing nations, and the U.S. potentially not waiving the sanctions on Iran.

Circumstances that could cause downward pressure on oil prices include possible termination of the OPEC accord, growing oil production in Libya and Nigeria, and a boost in U.S. shale production.


OPEC: Oil Market Rebalance Occurring Faster than Anticipated

The longstanding OPEC deal to cut oil production in order to rebalance the global market is closer than ever to meeting its goal with OECD inventories just 74 million barrels above the five-year average recorded in January 2017.

When the OPEC deal went into effect in early 2017, inventories were 340 million barrels above the benchmark figure, according to OPEC research group leader Ayed Al Qahtani.

OPEC members and some non-OPEC nations such as Russia have been significantly reducing output by about 1.8 million barrels a day to push prices upwards after a major January 2016 market crash and subsequent oil glut.

Both the OPEC and non-OPEC producers are in talks to draft a plan for long-term cooperation this year as a way to institutionalize their current collaboration into a supergroup of oil producers, which would be led by Russia and Saudi Arabia.