UPDATE 9-Oil eases on profit taking, demand jitters; stays near highest in years

Reuters

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    * IMF cuts growth outlook for major economies
    * China Sept crude imports down 15% y/y - data
    * U.S. gasoline and diesel futures close at highest since
Oct 2014
    * Market awaits API data at 2030 GMT

 (Adds closing prices)
    By Scott DiSavino
    NEW YORK, Oct 13 (Reuters) - Oil prices eased on Wednesday
on worries that crude demand growth would slow, which ate into
recent gains that had brought prices to multi-year highs in
recent sessions.
    Analysts noted that some traders likely took profits in U.S.
crude after West Texas Intermediate (WTI) futures hit their
highest since October 2014 during the past three sessions.
    Brent  LCOc1  futures fell 24 cents, or 0.3%, to settle at
$83.18 a barrel, while U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude
 CLc1  fell 20 cents, or 0.3%, to $80.44.
    Prices came under pressure early when China, the world's
biggest crude importer, released data showing September imports
fell 15% from a year earlier.  urn:newsml:reuters.com:*:nL1N2R905Z
    The market is awaiting U.S. oil inventory data that analysts
expect will show a 0.7 million barrel build in crude stocks.
 EIA/S   API/S   ENERGYUSA   ENERGYAPI 
    Data from the American Petroleum Institute, an industry
group, is due at 4:30 p.m. EDT (2030 GMT) on Wednesday and from
the U.S. Energy Information Administration on Thursday. The data
was delayed by a day following the Columbus Day holiday on
Monday.
    Shortages of coal and natural gas in China, Europe and India
have boosted prices for the fuels burned for electricity
generation. Oil products are being used as a substitute.
    The European Commission outlined measures the European Union
could use to combat surging energy prices, and said it would
explore joint gas purchasing among countries.  urn:newsml:reuters.com:*:nL8N2R92PN
    The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC)
trimmed its world oil demand growth forecast for 2021 while
maintaining its 2022 view. 
    But OPEC said surging natural gas prices could boost demand
for oil products as end users switch.  urn:newsml:reuters.com:*:nL1N2R90SH
    "Today’s monthly OPEC report appeared to offer something for
both the bulls and the bears with the agency unexpectedly
reducing their global oil demand forecast...for this year while
adjusting their non-OPEC supply growth estimate downward," said
Jim Ritterbusch, president of Ritterbusch and Associates in
Galena, Illinois.
    Global markets should not expect more oil from Iran in the
near future. The United States said it was ready to consider
"all options" if Iran is unwilling to return to the 2015 nuclear
deal.  urn:newsml:reuters.com:*:nL1N2R91QP
    In Russia, President Vladimir Putin said oil prices could
reach $100 a barrel and noted Moscow was ready to provide more
natural gas to Europe if requested.  urn:newsml:reuters.com:*:nL8N2R92D9  urn:newsml:reuters.com:*:nL8N2R924M
 urn:newsml:reuters.com:*:nL8N2R91XW
    Energy markets are focused on how the supply crunch will
affect oil demand, especially in the world's second biggest
economy China.  urn:newsml:reuters.com:*:nL1N2R905S  urn:newsml:reuters.com:*:nL1N2R90M0  urn:newsml:reuters.com:*:nL1N2R907P
 urn:newsml:reuters.com:*:nL1N2R90AT  urn:newsml:reuters.com:*:nL1N2R905K  urn:newsml:reuters.com:*:nL1N2R905O
    "These are troubling times for China. A severe energy crisis
is gripping the country," said Stephen Brennock of broker PVM.
    In India, which is suffering its worst power shortages since
2016 due to a crippling lack of coal, saw fuel consumption crawl
higher in September as economic activity ramped up. India is the
world's third-biggest oil importer.  urn:newsml:reuters.com:*:nL1N2R916K  urn:newsml:reuters.com:*:nL1N2R92AC
    In the United States, the government projected consumers
will spend more to heat their homes this winter than last year
due mostly to surging energy prices.  urn:newsml:reuters.com:*:nL1N2R916Z
    The White House has been speaking with U.S. oil and gas
producers about helping to bring down rising fuel costs.
 urn:newsml:reuters.com:*:nL1N2R91YK
    U.S. gasoline  RBc1  and diesel  HOc1  futures closed at
their highest since October 2014 on Wednesday.

 (Additional reporting by Sonali Paul in Melbourne and Florence
Tan in Singapore and Noah Browning in London; Editing by Emelia
Sithole-Matarise, Barbara Lewis, Louise Heavens, Jan Harvey,
Jane Merriman and David Gregorio)
 ((scott.disavino@thomsonreuters.com; +1 332 219 1922; Reuters
Messaging: scott.disavino.thomsonreuters.com@reuters.net))

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