North America Crude Markets short-term outlook: September 2023
All eyes are on TMX. Will the long-awaited project achieve its goal of a Q1 2024 start-up? Will a recent request for a small-scale construction re-route delay this timeline? How will barrel-staging and line-fill affect Canadian balances before TMX even enters service? Will recent downward pressure on WCS prices persist in the months to come, and how will prices be affected once TMX does come online? In this outlook, we dive into these questions. We use recent Wood Mackenzie reconnaissance and satellite imagery to assess TMX construction progress and potential completion timelines. We deconstruct WCS prices – analysing drivers of recent price moves and laying out our expectations for WCS differentials post-TMX. We also update our WCS netback analysis to compare the economics of various routes and end markets for WCS barrels.