Oil Slides on concerns over US Output

21 March, 2017, 07:53 | Author: Leticia Walters

Consumer countries have built up large stockpiles of crude during almost three years of low prices, and US shale production is rebounding as prices have recovered since OPEC reached the production deal November.

Brent Crude Futures were 20 cents down from their last close, as recorded at 0025 GMT, and stand at $51.56 per barrel. US West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures were trading 73 cents lower at $48.05 a barrel. On Nov. 30, the cartel officially announced that its members would cut their production by 1.2 million barrels per day, while non-OPEC members would reduce production by an additional 600,000 barrels per day.

The OPEC headline about keeping production cuts in place with Non OPEC participation, sent the price of Crude oil back toward unchanged levels.

Also underpinning crude oil was data from the International Energy Agency (IEA) suggesting OPEC cuts should create a crude deficit in the first half of 2017.

Is It the Beginning of a Bear Market for Crude Oil? OPEC was also able to work out a deal with a consortium of non-OPEC producers such as Russian Federation and Venezuela to cut their production.

This extended a recovery that is expected to boost shale production by the most in six-months in April. Hence, oil prices can start climbing up if OPEC can pull off another deal in which members agree to deepen or extend the production cuts.

Traders said that US crude storage data, due to be published later on Tuesday by the American Petroleum Institute (API), would likely be the next significant price driver.

"It was obvious that with a reversal in prices, the U.S. shale production was going to pick up".

REYL Bank expects that crude oil prices could trade between $50 and $60 per barrel in 2017. Crude could remain in a narrow range, much like last week if investors continue to weigh the impact of the first oil cut from OPEC against the rising USA shale oil output and high inventories.

Data last week from oilfield services company Baker Hughes showed an increase in the number of rigs deployed in the United States for the ninth week in a row.

"We don't think a renewed crash in oil prices would have as large an effect on the world economy as it did in 2015-16", said Capital Economic's economist Simon MacAdam.

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