Oil markets tightening due to USA sanctions: IEA

14 April, 2019, 23:15 | Author: Regina Silva
  • A pump jack stands at dusk in the Permian Basin area in Texas U.S. Bloomberg  Angus Mordant

Demand for OPEC crude in 2018 averaged 31.35 million bpd.

Venezuela pumped 960,000 bpd in March, down nearly 500,000 bpd from February, OPEC said in a report on Wednesday.

Brent and WTI have risen by around 30 and 40 percent respectively since the start of the year.

"Demand in China, India and the U.S.is estimated to have grown by 1 million b/d in Jan-Feb 2019".

On the demand side, Chinese data showed exports rebounded last month, driving US and euro zone bond yields to three-week highs and helping offset weaker imports and reports of another cut in German growth forecasts. The producers are due to meet on June 25-26 to decide whether to extend the pact. Indicating that an ongoing price hike could prompt OPEC to promote a supply glut, an analyst at Price Future Group in Chicago, Phil Flynn said, "Now there is a suggestion that OPEC may surprise us and raise production pre-emptively if we get a price spike".

OPEC, Russia and other non-member producers are reducing output by 1.2 million bpd from January 1 for six months.

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Saudi Arabia can add more oil to the market without adjusting production quotas since the kingdom's output in March was some 500,000 bpd below its OPEC target, the source added.

Angola's oil production saw a marginal increase last March of 7000 barrels per day (bpd) to 1.454 million bpd, according to secondary sources, the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) said. That is much below its quota of 10.31 million bpd under the cut agreement. It hit a session high of $64.65 earlier in a fresh attempt by long-oil hedge funds to reach the $65 target.

The rig count fell for the past four months as independent exploration and production companies cut spending on new drilling to focus on earnings growth instead of increased output.

At the same time, the International Energy Agency (IEA) reported that OPEC production fell 550,000 bpd.

In Iran, hit by USA sanctions, output was slight down, falling 28,000 bpd to 2.70 million bpd in March. The dollar index slipped to its lowest against the euro in more than two weeks, making crude cheaper for non-U.S. buyers. OPEC said it had made some progress towards achieving this goal.

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