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Refined Products

Recap: In what was a choppy trading session, WTI traded back up to $50 a barrel, gaining support on the likelihood that Britain will vote to stay within the European Union. A late session rally followed reports of renewed attacks on a pipeline in Nigeria.  August futures jumped 1.12%, or 57 cents after the news broke, achieving a new high of $50.17, to settle at its highest level in two weeks. This spot contract settled at $50.11 a barrel, up 98 cents, or 2%. August Brent gained $1.03, or 2.1%, to settle at $50.91 a barrel.

July RBOB rose 1.5 cents, or 1%, to settle at $1.604 a gallon, while July heating oil added 1.6 cents, or 1.1%, to $1.521 a gallon.

Fundamental News:
Saudi Arabia's Oil Minister Khalid al-Falih said oil markets are improving as supply and demand are almost balanced.

According to Christof Ruehl of Abu Dhabi Investment Authority, as markets take time to absorb excess crude in storage the global oil glut will likely last until the middle of 2017. This speculation contrasts with the more optimistic outlook of some industry leaders and analysts who foresee demand nearing supply by the end of this year.

European lenders including UniCredit SpA, HSBC Holdings Plc and ING Group NV have started scaling down their exposure in oil and gas after two years of depressed energy prices. These banks have either sold some of the loans they made to energy companies in the past two months or held discussions with potential buyers. Bloomberg data shows new loans to energy companies in Europe have fallen 50% this year.

The EIA reported that US crude oil refining capacity in 2015 increased by 349,948 bpd or 2% to 18.3 million bpd.  Most of the growth was in Texas, which added 218,503 bpd.  The number of operating refineries increased by one to 141. 

Credit Suisse reported that refining margins fell across all US petroleum districts in the week ending June 17th.  Margins in the Midwest fell by $8.36 to $16.54/barrel followed by margins in the East Coast region, which fell by $1.31 to $8.74/barrel.  Gulf Coast region margins fell by $1.24/barrel to $10.25/barrel.  In the Rockies region, margins fell by 51 cents to $25.12/barrel and in the West Coast region, margins fell by 19 cents to $21.70/barrel. 

Citi analysts predict 2017 U.S. oil production could increase by approximately 160,000 bpd year on year. This is due to rises in U.S. rig counts and the clearing of a backlog of drilled-but-uncompleted wells by producers.

The US Labor Department reported that the number of initial unemployment benefit claims fell by 18,000 to a seasonally adjusted 259,000 in the week ending June 18th

The Commerce Department said single family home sales fell 6% to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 551,000 units last month from a more than eight year high in April. 

National economic activity declined in May, mainly due to a decline in industrial production and lackluster job growth.  The Chicago Fed National Activity Index fell to -0.51 in May from 0.05 in April. 

According to Bet fair betting odds, the implied probability of a British vote to remain in the EU increased to 86% on Thursday. 

Barclays has stopped accepting new "stop loss" orders, as banks moved to limit speculative market moves and cap their exposure to the results of Britain's referendum on its EU membership.  Bank of America Merrill Lynch and UBS have both issued communications to clients this week, with warnings of potential gaps in the services they normally provide to major institutional clients. 

Early Market Call - as of 9:45 AM EDT

WTI - Aug $47.92, down $2.17
RBOB - July $1.5416, down 6.19 cents
HO - July $1.4642, down 5.64 cents


British voters chose to leave the European Union.  


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Natural Gas

Thursday, June 23rd, saw the front-month NYMEX Natural Gas Futures Contracts open at $2.651, more than two cents below Wednesday’s closing price of $2.677.  Entering the market in a steady ascent, the contract rose as high as $2.684 ahead of the 10:30AM storage report.  As the report hit the wire, the contract gradually sank to find the intraday low of $2.614.  Focusing on expected future cooling demand due to warmer temperatures, prices then rallied to climb into the afternoon.  Tallying the intraday high of $2.720 at 1:20PM, July staggered lower for the balance of the day, closing higher on Thursday at $2.698.

The EIA Natural Gas Storage Report published on Thursday showed a 62 BCF injection to storage for the week ended June 17th – nearly even with the market estimate of 61 BCF.  Total working gas in storage was reported as 3,103 BCF, 24.9% above this time last year and 28.0% above the five-year average.

This morning in Globex, WTI Crude was down $2.17; Natural Gas was down three cents; Heating Oil was down six cents; and, Gasoline was down seven cents.  Additionally, cash prices were lower in both regions.

Natural Gas Glossary

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