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Futures Movers: Oil extends rise as traders monitor Kazakhstan unrest

Oil futures rose Friday, heading for a five-day winning streak to kick off the first trading week of 2022, as investors continued to monitor unrest in Kazakhstan that threatens to add to supply outages that have helped boost crude prices.

West Texas Intermediate crude for February delivery
CL00,
+0.58%

CLG22,
+0.58%

was up 74 cents, or 0.9%, at $80.20 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange, on track for a 6.6% weekly rise. March Brent crude
BRN00,
+0.67%

BRNH22,
+0.67%
,
the global benchmark, rose 75 cents, or 0.9%, to $82.74 a barrel on ICE Futures Europe, set for a 6.2% weekly rise.

Violent protests, sparked by a sharp rise in fuel prices, have rocked Kazakhstan this week, with scores of protesters and ore than a dozen law enforcement officers killed. The internet across the country was shut down, and two airports, including on in Almaty, the nation’s largest city were closed. On Friday, the country’s president said order had been restored. The government also announced a 180-day price cap on vehicle fuel and a moratorium on utility rate increases.

“The country represents yet another risk supply disruption given the epicenter of the unfolding unrest and a ‘technical adjustment’ having already occurred at the Tengiz oil field,” said Helima Croft, head of global commodity strategy at RBC Capital Markets, in a note.

The operator of the Tengiz oil field, the country’s largest at 600,000 barrels a day, on Thursday said it had made a technical adjustment due to logistics issues, S&P Global Platts reported. Kazakhstan is the largest producer in the former Soviet Union at around 1.6 million barrels a day.

“Overall, with around 1 [million barrels a day] of production currently offline because of disruptions in Ecuador, Libya, and Nigeria, further outages would be particularly unwelcome for the Biden administration as it faces a consumer backlash over rising gasoline prices in advance of the midterm elections,” she said.

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