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Refined Products

Recap: The downing of a Russian fighter jet by Turkey sparked a rally, sending oil prices to their highest level in two weeks. January WTI moved as much as 4 percent, peaking the session at $43.46. With the release of the API numbers showing a 2.6 million barrel increase, higher than the expected 800,000-1.5 million, WTI slipped 25 cents below the settlement price of $42.87, which was up $1.17 on the day. Brent for January delivery settled at $46.12, up $1.29, or 2.88 percent. In addition the delayed restart of Irving's St. John, New Brunswick refinery has left supplies in the New York Harbor tight. This, combined with expectations for an increase in demand due to the U.S. Thanksgiving Holiday, pushed gasoline futures higher, with the December contract climbing as much as 5.8 percent, to a high of $1.4065. Gains were slightly pared, and this spot contract finished at $1.3902, up 7.68 cents. Refining margins for gasoline rose by about $1 a barrel in both the United States and Europe. Heating oil for December delivery gained 2.54 cents, settling at $1.3997.

Fundamental News: Turkey shot down a Russian warplane near the Syrian border on Tuesday, saying it had repeatedly violated its air space.  Russia's President Vladimir Putin said the plane had been attacked when it was 1 km inside Syria and warned of serious consequences for what he termed a "stab in the back."  The Turkish military said the aircraft had been warned 10 times within five minutes about violating Turkish air space. 

Genscape reported a record 3.36 million barrels of domestic crude floated in waters along the US Gulf Coast last week as vessels waited to unload. 

The Center on Global Energy Policy said one change ministers could agree on at OPEC's meeting is an increase in the group's output target as Indonesia rejoins the group after seven years.  The ceiling may be raised to 31 million bpd from the current 30 million bpd. 

Reuters reported that the next shift in oil prices may rest on a Saudi-Iranian output deal.  Saudi Arabia has stated that it will work with the world's largest oil producers to maintain price stability.  To be effective, Saudi Arabia will also have to make room for Iran to add barrels to the market. 

More than a dozen oil tankers are waiting to discharge around Venezuelan ports in the Caribbean as ship owners and oil providers refuse to unload cargoes until PDVSA makes payments.  At least four cargoes of gasoline blendstock, cat gas and diesel were also bought and scheduled for October and November delivery amid outages at some of PDVSA's main refineries.   

Petrobras said a walkout by workers ended after 19 days and it was keeping its 2015 production target of 2.125 million bpd.  The strike cost Petrobras 2.29 million barrels of oil production or 120,526 bpd and 48.4 million cubic meters of natural gas production.  The supply of products did not suffer any interruptions. 

Iran's nuclear negotiator Abbas Araqchi said Iran expects a landmark deal it reached with world powers in July to be implemented at the start of next year. 

Frontline said less than 5% of the global fleet of supertankers is currently used for storing oil as the cost of renting the ships, known as very large crude carriers or VLCCs, is too high to make this profitable.  About 20-30 VLCCs, or between 3.1-4.7% of the global fleet of 645 ships, is now used for storage. 

The US economy expanded at a faster pace than initially estimated in the third quarter as businesses stocked up on more goods.  GDP advanced at a 2.1% seasonally adjusted annual rate in the third quarter, according to the Commerce Department.  It is up from initial estimate of 1.5% growth. 

Early Market Call - as of 9:05 AM EDT

WTI - Jan $42.27, down 60 cents

RBOB - Dec $1.3709, down 1.93 cents

ULSD - Dec $1.3879, down 1.18 cents

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Natural Gas

Tuesday, November 24th, saw the front-month NYMEX Natural Gas Futures Contracts open at $2.153, nearly six cents below Monday’s closing price of $2.210.  Emerging into the market in a slight descent, prices fell to the intraday low of $2.139 by 9:30AM. Vaulting higher from this low, the contract traded through peaks and valleys while gradually making its way higher through the day.  Trading near $2.170 shortly after noon, prices swung temporarily lower before rising to reach the intraday high of $2.212 at 1:30PM.  Seesawing along the $2.205 mark for the rest of the day, December closed lower on Tuesday at $2.200.

Due to the closure of the Federal Government on Thursday, the EIA Natural Gas Storage Report will be released at 10:30AM today.  The report is expected to show a 5 BCF injection to storage for the week ended November 20th.  This compares to a 162 BCF withdrawal at this time last year and a five-year average withdrawal amount of 39 BCF. 

This morning in Globex, WTI Crude was down 84 cents; Natural Gas was down three cents; Heating Oil was down two cents; and, Gasoline was down four cents.

Cash prices were lower in New York and New England.

Natural Gas Glossary

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