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Record Crude Volumes Float Offshore, Crude Stocks Plummet


French strike action has led to record amounts of crude and condensate sitting idly offshore while the country's crude stocks have plummeted, according to Kpler and OilX.

  • Around 17 cargoes carrying crude oil, oil products or chemical products have been floating in French waters for the past week, according to Kpler crude analyst Johannes Rauball.
  • "Seven of these cargoes are carrying around 7mn barrels of crude and condensate, which marks the highest level on record and represents double what we observed at the peak in October of last year," Rauball said.
  • France's crude oil stocks have fallen to 40.3mn barrels in March, the lowest since at least January 2010, according to OilX.
  • France's refinery intake has fallen to its lowest level since October at 764kbpd, OilX data show.
  • The absence of French buying interest has increased supplies elsewhere of crude grades from the North Sea, west Africa and blends from the Caspian pipeline, according to traders.
  • This has weighed on prices of these crude grades as market players are forced to look elsewhere for buyers.
  • "A vast amount of Nigeria's April loadings schedule has gone unsold," Rauball said.

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