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									April 15, 2013




Brent pressured as European
and Chinese concerns resurface
                                                                                                 Commodities Research




Despite recent price action, current fundamental data looks tight               Stefan Wieler, CFA
After rebounding $2/bbl on Tuesday, Brent sold off again over the past two      (212) 357-7486 stefan.wieler@gs.com
                                                                                Goldman, Sachs & Co.
days and closed at 103.11 as of Friday, the lowest level in 9 months. By the
time of writing, Brent is down a further $2.00/bbl overnight on the back of
disappointing Chinese activity data. This suggests that in the tug of war       Jeffrey Currie
between tight global fundamentals and the negative sentiment created by         (212) 357-6801 jeffrey.currie@gs.com
weak European product markets and fears of further Chinese slowdown,            Goldman, Sachs & Co.
the latter currently prevail. These concerns have weighed on the market
even as global inventory data for the end of March remains close to last
year’s low levels, suggesting that the market remains quite tight.


But product prices tell another story
Nevertheless, product cracks, and particularly European product cracks,
have come under significant pressure, raising concerns that European
demand is weaker than expected, which in turn pulled Brent prices lower.
However, in our view, the weakness in European product cracks does not
necessarily reflect deteriorating economic activity. In our view, the
weakness in margins is likely the result of the normal seasonal trough in
demand, combined with a growing overhang in European refinery capacity
and strong competition for exports from US refiners and petrochemical
producers. Therefore given our economists forecast for global growth, we
expect that global petroleum inventories will follow roughly last year’s
path, which suggest that the global oil market should remain quite tight.


Short term downside risk increase
We will not get clarity on whether this weakness in European demand is
indeed just seasonal or whether it reflects something more lasting for
another two months. In the meantime, European margins could suffer
further as the European refinery turnaround season has peaked and more
and more refineries are coming back from maintenance. This could put
further downward pressure on Brent prices, which could be exacerbated
when the large crude inventory overhang in the US Midwest will is shifted
to the US gulf Coast beginning in May. Consequently, we see some
increasing short term risk to our trading recommendation to hold
a long Brent crude GSCI position. We therefore close this position
with a loss of 15.48% but will re-evaluate the opportunities once we get
more clarity on the state of European demand.




Investors should consider this report as only a single factor in making their investment decision. For Reg AC certification
and other important disclosures, see the Disclosure Appendix, or go to www.gs.com/research/hedge.html.



The Goldman Sachs Group, Inc.                                                                                          Goldman Sachs
April 15, 2013




Brent remains under pressure as European margins falter
                                  After rebounding $2/bbl on Tuesday, Brent sold off again over the past two days and
                                  closed at 103.11 as of Friday, the lowest level in 9 months. By the time of writing, Brent is
                                  down a further $2.00/bbl overnight on the back of disappointing Chinese activity data. This
                                  suggests that in the tug of war between tight global fundamentals and the negative
                                  sentiment created by weak European product markets and fears of further slowdown in
                                  China, the latter currently prevail. More specifically, global inventories at the end of March
                                  remain close to last years low levels, suggesting that the market remains quite tight.
                                  However, product cracks, and particularly European product cracks, have come under
                                  significant pressure, raising concerns that European demand is weaker than expected,
                                  which in turn pulled Brent prices lower. The latest set of IEA data that has been published
                                  last Thursday shows indeed that European demand remains weak. However, in our view,
                                  the weakness in European product cracks does not necessarily reflect deteriorating
                                  economic activity. In our view, the weakness in margins is likely the result of the normal
                                  seasonal trough in demand, combined with a growing overhang in European refinery
                                  capacity and strong competition for exports from US refiners and petrochemical producers.
                                  Therefore given our economists forecast for global growth, we expect that global
                                  petroleum inventories will follow roughly last year’s path, which suggest that the global oil
                                  market should remain quite tight. However, we will not get clarity whether this weakness in
                                  European demand is indeed just seasonal or whether it reflects something more lasting for
                                  another two months. In the meantime, European margins could suffer further as the
                                  European refinery turnaround season has peaked and more and more refineries are
                                  coming back from maintenance. This could put further downward pressure on Brent prices,
                                  which could be exacerbated by the fact that the large crude inventory overhang in the US
                                  Midwest will be shifted to the US gulf Coast beginning in May. Consequently, we see
                                  some increasing short term risk to our trading recommendation to hold a long
                                  Brent crude GSCI position. We therefore close this position with a loss of 15.48%
                                  but will re-evaluate the opportunities once we get more clarity on the state of European
                                  demand.



                                  The current fundamental data looks tight

                                  Petroleum stocks by the end of March as reported by the International Energy Agency (IEA)
                                  on Thursday remained tight.

                                          Total global inventories adjusted for the overhang in US NGL and other petroleum
                                           inventories (which we believe are the result of the strong production growth of
                                           shale oil and gas plays in the US and become increasingly irrelevant for global
                                           crude markets remain at last years low levels, close to 65 million barrels below the
                                           2009-2011 average (see Exhibit 1).

                                          Global demand also remained healthy in 1Q13 as implied demand was up
                                           1.3 million b/d (see Exhibit 2).



                                  But product prices tell another story

                                  However, European product margins moved sharply lower over the past weeks.

                                          Both gasoline and gasoil cracks have now dropped below the 2011-2012 levels
                                           (see Exhibit 3 & 4).

                                          In addition, naphtha cracks have collapsed over the past weeks (see Exhibit 5),
                                           suggesting that demand from the petrochemical sector is also very weak, which
                                           could have knock on effects on gasoline margins going forward.

Goldman Sachs Global Economics, Commodities and Strategy Research                                                              2
April 15, 2013




                                          The latest IEA data suggest that European demand indeed remained weak. While
                                           the decline in demand in 1Q13 of around 500 thousand b/d was roughly in line
                                           with last years levels, we believe that it was supported by very cold winter weather.



                                  As we have highlighted before (see Energy Weekly: European refining margins catching up
                                  with reality, March 20, 2013), European excess refining capacity is likely to increase
                                  strongly as the downward trend in refining capacity, which has so far offset the loss in
                                  demand over the past 3 years, has come to an end. At the same time, higher exports are
                                  unlikely to sustainably help European refiners as they suffer from much higher costs
                                  compared to their US peers. In addition, US refiners have a strong incentive to export
                                  gasoline due to the high costs for RINs. And it is not just the US refiners that compete for
                                  export demand; it is also the US petrochemical producers. US petchems have a strong
                                  advantage over their European peers as they can run on cheap ethane while the European
                                  petchems are much more dependent on naphtha. Consequently, we believe that the
                                  weakness in European naphtha cracks is likely more structural.

                                  It is important to notice that in our forecast for only a modest build in global inventories in
                                  2Q13 we do embed a significant slowdown in demand growth from the weather inflated
                                  numbers in 1Q13 (see Exhibit 7). Demand is typically weakest in 2Q before accelerating
                                  going into 3Q. Given our forecast for a more modest demand growth in 2Q13-3Q around
                                  0.9 million b/d, combined with supply growth remaining closer to March levels at slightly
                                  over 1 million b/d over the same time period, global inventories should follow roughly last
                                  year’s path (see Exhibit 8), suggesting that the global crude oil market should remain tight.
                                  However, we will not get clarity for another two months whether this weakness in
                                  European demand is indeed just seasonal or whether it reflects a more sustainable
                                  weakness. In the meantime, European margins could suffer further as the European
                                  refinery turnaround season has peaked and more and more refineries are coming back
                                  from maintenance.

                                  Further, the 3 new pipelines that will bring crude from the Permian basin in Texas to the
                                  US Gulf Coast market are now all either running or filling. We long held the view that these
                                  3 pipelines are key to reverse the upward trend in Cushing inventories and consequently
                                  we expect that the large inventory overhang in the US Midwest will move the USGC where
                                  it de facto becomes part of global inventories once again. While this not changing our
                                  expectations on the path of global inventories, this could put some additional temporary
                                  pressure on the global light sweet market.

                                  Consequently, while we believe that oil market fundamentals remain intact and we expect
                                  Brent prices to move back to our short term target of $110.00/bbl as we come out of the
                                  seasonally weakest demand period, we see some increasing short term risk to our trading
                                  recommendation to hold a long Brent crude GSCI position. We therefore close this position
                                  with a loss of 15.48% but will re-evaluate the opportunities once we get more clarity on the
                                  state of European demand.




Goldman Sachs Global Economics, Commodities and Strategy Research                                                               3
April 15, 2013




Exhibit 1: Global stocks remain low…                                                                                     Exhibit 2: …and implied demand strong
Thousand barrels, total petroleum ex US NGL & other stocks                                                               Thousand b/d

 2,550,000                                                                                                                94,000



                                                                                                                          92,000
 2,500,000


                                                                                                                          90,000
 2,450,000

                                                                                                                          88,000
 2,400,000

                                                                                                                          86,000

 2,350,000
                                                                                                                          84,000


 2,300,000
                                                                                                                          82,000


 2,250,000
                                                                                                                          80,000



 2,200,000                                                                                                                78,000
                Jan    Feb   Mar     Apr     May        Jun     Jul     Aug        Sep     Oct         Nov         Dec                  Jan     Feb     Mar      Apr       May      Jun         Jul         Aug         Sep         Oct     Nov         Dec

                             2013          2012         2011          2010          2009                                                                 2013          2012          2011              2010              2009


Source: IEA, DOE and Goldman Sachs Global ECS Research.                                                                  Source: IEA, Argus, DE, CNBS, JOD and Goldman Sachs Global ECS Research.


Exhibit 3: European gasoline crack dropped below the                                                                     Exhibit 4: …and so did gasoil cracks
2011-12 levels…                                                                                                          $/bbl
$/bbl

 30.00                                                                                                                    25.00


 25.00

                                                                                                                          20.00
 20.00


 15.00

                                                                                                                          15.00
 10.00


  5.00
                                                                                                                          10.00

  0.00


  -5.00
                                                                                                                           5.00

 -10.00


 -15.00                                                                                                                    0.00
          Jan    Feb   Mar    Apr     May         Jun     Jul     Aug        Sep     Oct         Nov         Dec                  Jan     Feb     Mar     Apr        May      Jun         Jul         Aug         Sep         Oct         Nov     Dec

                              2009         2010         2011      2012         2013                                                                           2009     2010          2011             2012          2013


Source: Platts, ICE and Goldman Sachs Global ECS Research.                                                               Source: Platts, ICE and Goldman Sachs Global ECS Research.




Goldman Sachs Global Economics, Commodities and Strategy Research                                                                                                                                                                                         4
April 15, 2013




Exhibit 5: European naphtha cracks collapsed                                                       Exhibit 6: European demand remains weak
$/bbl                                                                                              % change year-over-year

 10.00                                                                                                4.0


                                                                                                      2.0

   5.00
                                                                                                      0.0


                                                                                                     -2.0
   0.00
                                                                                                     -4.0


                                                                                                     -6.0
  -5.00

                                                                                                     -8.0

 -10.00                                                                                             -10.0


                                                                                                    -12.0

 -15.00
                                                                                                    -14.0


                                                                                                    -16.0
 -20.00                                                                                                     LPG and   Naphtha       Motor       Jet and     Gas/Diesel    Residual    Other         Total
          Jan   Feb   Mar   Apr    May    Jun    Jul   Aug      Sep   Oct   Nov      Dec                     Ethane                Gasoline    Kerosene        Oil         Fuels     Products     Products

                            2009     2010       2011   2012       2013                                                                      Mar-13    1Q13       2012


Source: Platts, ICE and Goldman Sachs Global ECS Research.                                         Source: IEA


Exhibit 7: We expect demand to slow down from the                                                  Exhibit 8: We expect global inventories to follow roughly
weather inflated 1Q13 levels, but pick up in 2H13                                                  last year’s path
% change year-over-year, GDP (lhs)                                                                 Thousand barrels, total petroleum ex US NGL & other stocks

 6.00                                                                                      4.00     2,550,000


 5.00                                                                                      3.00

                                                                                                    2,500,000
 4.00                                                                                      2.00


 3.00                                                                                      1.00
                                                                                                    2,450,000

 2.00                                                                                      0.00


 1.00                                                                                      -1.00
                                                                                                    2,400,000


 0.00                                                                                      -2.00


 -1.00                                                                                     -3.00    2,350,000



 -2.00                                                                                     -4.00

                                                                                                    2,300,000
 -3.00                                                                                     -5.00                Jan   Feb    Mar      Apr     May     Jun      Jul       Aug   Sep    Oct       Nov   Dec

                World GDP -1.5% the annual Brent price change         World demand                                    2009         2010        2011          2012         2013       2013E


Source: Goldman Sachs Global ECS Research.                                                         Source: IEA, DOE and Goldman Sachs Global ECS Research.




Goldman Sachs Global Economics, Commodities and Strategy Research                                                                                                                                        5
April 15, 2013




Current trading recommendations
                                                                                                                                                     Current
                      Current trades                                           First recommended                Initial value   Current Value
                                                                                                                                                   profit/(loss)1

 Closing: Long S&P GSCI Brent crude oil total return index
 Long S&P GSCI Brent crude oil total return index at initial index value of 1,174.26
                                                                      August 21, 2012 - Energy Weekly              1,174.26         1,118.93         (15.48%)
                       Rolled from a long September 2012 NYMEX WTI Crude Oil position on 21-Aug-12 , carrying forward a potential loss of 10.77%

 Short soybean crush margin
 Sell Jul-13 CBOT soybean crush future
                                                                        April 10, 2013 - Agriculture Update        $0.47/bu        $0.39/bu          $0.08/bu

 Short Gold
 Short the S&P GSCI Gold total return index
                                                                          April 10, 2013 - Precious Metals      $1,586.20/toz    $1,500.93/toz      $85.27/toz

 Long Sep-13 NYMEX WTI crude vs. short Sep-13 ICE Brent crude
 Buy 1 Sep-13 NYMEX WTI crude, sell 1 Sep-13 ICE Brent
                                                                 August 21, 2012 - Energy Weekly                 ($10.33/bbl)     ($10.40/bbl)        $1.12/bbl
                  Rolled from a Long Jun-13 NYMEX WTI crude vs. short Jun-13 ICE Brent crude position on 7 April 2013 with a potential gain of $1.19bbl

 Long NYMEX natural gas call options
 Buy $4.20 Nov-13 NYMEX natural gas call option
                                                                         April 4, 2013 - Natural Gas Watch          $0.31            $0.48            $0.17

 Long Copper
  Buy LME September 2013 copper future
                                                                          March 1, 2013 - Metal Detector           $7,718/t         $7,426/t         ($292/t)

 The Commodity Carry Basket: Crude, Corn and Base (CCB)
 Long the S&P GSCI Petroleum, Corn and Copper total return indices, short the S&P GSCI F3 Aluminium total return index, equally weighted
                                                              December 5, 2012 - 2013-2014 Outlook                 100.00           96.49             (3.51)

 ¹As of close on April 12, 2013. Inclusive of all previous rolling profits/losses.


Source: Goldman Sachs Global ECS Research.




Goldman Sachs Global Economics, Commodities and Strategy Research                                                                                                   6
April 15, 2013




Price actions, volatilities and forecasts
                             Prices and monthly
                                                       Volatilities (%) and monthly changes2                   Historical Prices                      Price Forecasts3
                                  changes1
                           units      12 Apr Change Implied2 Change Realized2 Change 3Q 11 4Q 11 1Q 12 2Q 12 3Q 12 4Q 12                            3m      6m      12m
Energy

    WTI Crude Oil          $/bbl      91.29            18.8     -2.70      19.2       3.6     89.54   94.06 103.03 93.35          92.20   88.23   105.00 100.00   97.00
                                               -1.25
    Brent Crude Oil        $/bbl      103.11           18.3     -1.94      19.6       7.8     112.09 109.02 118.45 108.76 109.42 110.13 110.00 105.00 105.00
                                               -6.54
    RBOB Gasoline          $/gal       2.80            22.3      1.57      25.0      -12.4     2.89   2.62      3.06    2.95      2.95    2.73    2.85     2.55    2.73
                                               -0.35
    NYMEX Heating Oil      $/gal       2.87     
                                               -0.08
                                                        18.5     -1.34      25.9      11.1      2.98   2.98      3.16    2.89      3.00    3.05    3.09     3.00    2.98

    NYMEX Nat. Gas        $/mmBtu      4.22            29.0     -0.62      28.6       -2.0     4.06   3.48      2.50    2.35      2.89    3.54    4.50     4.50    4.25
                                               0.58
    UK NBP Nat. Gas         p/th      68.14     
                                               -1.14
                                                        13.5      0.70      35.7      23.4     57.03   61.56    57.46   55.89      56.92   66.12   76.80   81.30   70.60
                      4
Industrial Metals

    LME Aluminum            $/mt      1,854            18.2     -0.08      15.4       -0.5    2,430   2,115    2,219   2,019      1,950   2,018   2,000   2,000   2,100
                                               -128
    LME Copper              $/mt      7,407            17.5     -0.26      18.2       6.1     8,993   7,530    8,329   7,829      7,721   7,924   8,000   9,000   8,000
                                                -424
    LME Nickel              $/mt      15,850           21.0     -1.19      21.0       -1.6    22,037 18,396 19,709 17,211 16,396 17,025 16,500 16,500 17,000
                                               -1180
    LME Zinc                $/mt      1,875            19.4     -0.77      18.2       5.0     2,247   1,917    2,042   1,932      1,905   1,978   1,950   2,000   2,100
                                                -111
    LME Lead                $/mt      2,049     -91
                                                        21.4     -1.29      19.9       3.7     2,449   2,009    2,117   1,986      1,989   2,200   2,150   2,150   2,300

Precious Metals

    COMEX Gold            $/troy oz   1,501            12.8     -0.69      19.0       5.9     1,704   1,685    1,693   1,612      1,654   1,719   1,530   1,490   1,390
                                                -91
    COMEX Silver          $/troy oz    26.3     
                                                -2.8
                                                        21.0     -2.06      25.0       6.3      38.8   31.8      32.7    29.4      29.9    32.6    25.5     24.9    23.2

Agriculture

    CBOT Wheat            Cent/bu      715             26.9      0.55      35.7      13.2      690    615       643     641       871     846      650     625     625
                                                 11
    CBOT Soybean          Cent/bu     1,379            19.9     -0.89      17.4       0.0     1,356   1,175    1,272   1,426      1,677   1,484   1,350   1,250   1,250
                                                -67
    CBOT Corn             Cent/bu      659             28.1      2.83      36.4      17.5      696    620       641     618       783     737      650     525     525
                                                -83
    ICE Cotton            Cent/lb      88              22.6      1.50      22.8       5.7      106     95        93      80        73      73      75      75       75
                                                  0
    ICE Coffee            Cent/lb      135             26.6     -2.01      21.0       -0.7     256    229       205     170       172     152      155     165     175
                                                 -6
    ICE Cocoa               $/mt      2,261            23.8      0.78      17.7       -3.8    2962    2,383    2,308   2,222      2,438   2,421   2,300   2,400   2,500
                                                102
    ICE Sugar             Cent/lb      18.0            18.8     -1.76      15.1       -8.1     29      25        25      21        21      20     18.5     18.5    19.0
                                                -0.8
    CME Live Cattle       Cent/lb     125.9             9.5      0.00      11.7       0.2      115    121       125     117       122     127     130.0   128.0   130.0
                                                -2.8
    CME Lean Hog          Cent/lb      82.2     
                                                0.8
                                                        13.7     -0.09      13.7       -6.6     94      88        87      88        83      82     82.0     91.0    83.0
1
    Monthly change is difference of close on last business day and close a month ago.
2
    Monthly volatility change is difference of average volatility over the past month and that of the prior month (3-mo ATM implied, 1-mo realized).
3
    Price forecasts refer to prompt contract price forecasts in 3-, 6-, and 12-months time.
4
    Based on LME three month prices.

Source: Goldman Sachs Global ECS Research estimates.




Goldman Sachs Global Economics, Commodities and Strategy Research                                                                                                          7
April 15, 2013




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Goldman Sachs Global Economics, Commodities and Strategy Research                                                                                           8

								
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