United States offers 18 million barrels of oil from emergency reserve


A maze of crude oil pipes and valves is pictured during a Department of Energy visit to the Strategic Petroleum Reserve in Freeport, Texas, United States, June 9, 2016. REUTERS / Richard Carson / File Photo

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WASHINGTON, Dec. 17 (Reuters) – The US Department of Energy on Friday said it would sell 18 million barrels of oil from the Strategic Petroleum Reserve, with corporate takeover bids expected on Jan. 4, in the part of a press release announced previously. aimed at cooling fuel prices.

The sale announcement was expected, after the Biden administration announced it as part of a larger 50 million barrels release from the reserve in coordination with other oil consuming countries, including China. , India and South Korea. The Department of Energy announced last Friday that the sale would be released on December 17. read more

The administration has tried to address the concerns of American consumers about high fuel costs and inflation as they travel more, even though President Joe Biden has few tools to deal with the price of crude, which is traded on a global market.

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By leading the sale, the Department of Energy is speeding up an auction that was authorized by Congress in 2018 to fund the government.

Oil deliveries to companies in the SPR, a series of caves on the Texas and Louisiana coasts, will be from Feb. 1 to March 31, the department said.

The department also plans to loan up to 32 million barrels of SPR oil to companies required to return the crude with interest. The first batch of the exchange will be 4.8 million barrels with Exxon Mobil Corp (XOM.N), America’s largest oil company, the department said on Friday. Read more

Brent crude prices stabilized 2% on Friday at $ 73.52 a barrel, as instances of the Omicron variant’s sharp rise raised concerns that further restrictions could affect fuel demand.

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Reporting by Timothy Gardner; Editing by Leslie Adler

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