Oil hits multi-week lows on fears of growing supplies

Jermaine Castillo
May 29, 2018

The sides started withholding supplies past year to tighten the market and prop up prices, which in 2016 fell to their lowest in more than a decade to less than $30 per barrel.

Prices of the barrel of the West Texas Intermediate are dropping for the fifth session in a row so far today, as traders continue to gauge the possibility that the OPEC and Russian Federation could start raising their production as soon as in June. "If Opec and allies decide at the June meeting to maintain their production cuts through December and ease anxiety among investors, crude prices may rebound". The global inventories are now close to OPEC's target, helping lift prices to three-year highs in recent weeks.

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According to Reuters, the discussions were triggered by complaints from US President Donald Trump that the oil price has soared too high and was being propped by artificially by OPEC, after Brent Crude hit its highest level since late 2014 at $80.50 this month.

After WTI Crude rising above 70 bbl, a 4-year high, prices dropped 4% Friday to 67.88 bbl on the New York Merc after Saudi Arabia and Russia's near agreement through OPEC to open up supply in 2-H of this year.

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"That is very important because Middle Eastern producers lose out heavily from that because their crude tends to be very high sulfur", Sen said, noting that the shipping fuels regulation is the "biggest change in the history of the market". Without compensating supply from other members, this number looks likely to expand as the U.S. reimposes sanctions on Iran and the collapse of Venezuela's oil industry worsens. Most producers weren't consulted about the proposal to revive supplies. Opec and his nation do not plan to stick to existing output cuts, he said.

The existing deal came into force on January 1, 2017, and envisaged global oil producers reducing their combined output by 1.8 million barrels per day (bpd) to cut bloated stockpiles and prop up oil prices.

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United States energy companies added 15 rigs looking for new oil in the week ending May 25, bringing the rig-count to 859, the highest level since 2015, in a strong indicator that American crude production will continue to rise. "Some 10 percent is probably the maximum level", he said when asked if he agreed with an estimate that the sanctions could remove as much as 800,000 barrels a day from the market.

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