Sunday, 17 February, 2019

Oil prices edge lower, tightening supply outlook supports

OPEC's oil exports to US fell to five-year low in January Oil Edges Up As Market Eyes Tighter Supply | NTA.ng - Breaking News, Nigeria, Africa, Worldwide
Laurie Berry | 07 February, 2019, 00:52

Oil fell below $62 a barrel on Wednesday after a report showed a rise in USA crude inventories, countering expectations of a tightening market in 2019 because of OPEC-led supply cuts and us sanctions on Venezuela.

West Texas Intermediate crude oil for March delivery US:CLG9 fell 90 cents, or 1.7%, to settle at $53.66 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange after trading as high as $55.21.

On average, however, analysts expected the EIA to report a rise of 3.7 million barrels in crude stockpiles for the week ended February 1, according to a survey conducted by S&P Global Platts.

Prices have been buoyed by a new round of supply cuts from the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries and its allies that began in January. They also expect that gasoline and distillate inventories each posted gains of 1.7 million barrels.

OPEC, Russia and other non-OPEC producers - an alliance known as OPEC+ - agreed in December to reduce supply by 1.2 million barrels per day (bpd) from January 1. "Because the number was a little disappointing, it played into the slowing demand scenario", said Phil Flynn, oil analyst at Price Futures Group in Chicago.

In an interview with Sputnik, Venezuela's National Representative to OPEC, the technical adviser at Venezuela's PDVSA company and Petroleum Ministry Ronny Romero spoke about the impact of the United States sanctions on the oil and gas giant.

Why FC Barcelona's overdependency on Messi can spell danger for the Blaugrana
Barcelona host Real Madrid at the Camp Nou on Wednesday evening in the first of three El Clasicos in the gap of one month. Valverde can only name 18 players in his final match day squad, though, so one player will have to miss out.

If sanctions compel US oil companies to wind down their business in the Latin American nation, production could sink to 600,000 barrels a day, according to Rapidan Energy Group. The sanctions will limit oil transactions between Venezuela and other countries and are similar to those imposed on Iran previous year, some analysts said after examining details announced by the US government.

The potential gusher comes as Venezuela's production plunges amid an economic crisis and USA sanctions targeting the country's oil sector.

Venezuela, like fellow OPEC members Iran and Libya, was exempt from production curbs under the deal on expectations that its output faced involuntary downward pressure in 2019.

Also dampening market sentiment were worries about weaker global economic growth and the U.S. Oil prices fell on Tuesday after a survey showed euro zone business expansion almost stalled in January.

U.S. President Donald Trump said in his State of the Union address that a trade deal with China was possible.

Senior U.S. and Chinese officials are poised to start another round of trade talks next week.

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