West Texas drillers could weaken any OPEC agreement on extending the cuts

, ,

All the Oil producing countries which have a deal with OPEC, along with Russia, can extend their deals. But at the same time this will be a green light for United States oil producers.

If the price oscillates following levels between $50 and $60, these are the great news for the U.S. oil drillers. They will gain profit on way broadly group of drilling sites. OPEC’s new deal could speed up the market rebalance. Rather, the numerous U.S. shale drillers could also release bigger amounts to surpass OPEC’s price gains.

Mainly the market analysts wait for oil price to rise close to $60, or even $60 by the end of the year.  But the prices are not expected to climb much higher.

“Basically U.S. supply is coming on faster than we anticipated. Now you have a higher inventory level to begin with, and a slower decline. That means in our view, prices are likely to be lower on average.” (Francisco Blanch, Bank of America Merrill Lynch.)

“The Brent crude will come to average $54 per barrel this year, from an average $61 per barrel. ”

He doesn’t expect much of an increase neither for 2018. The Brent will probably gain the price of  $56 per barrel, versus his previous forecast of an average $65.


Different opinions

Ed Morse from Citigroup said he thinks it would be a way better if the OPEC agrees on a deeper cuts.

“I think this market will re-balance itself very quickly. The extension alone should result in deeper cuts.”

Deeper cuts would mean an “invitation for cheating” and “a sign of desperation in markets.” He explained that the re-balancing is already happening.

On contrary, Blanch said: “I think it’s pretty risky to deepen the cuts when they’ll be losing market share to shale. It seems to me that Saudi, Russia, and even the U.S., everyone needs oil price leveled at $60. The problem is, that by the laws of nature as well as of the economy, you can’t have both the quantities and the prices.”

Morse: “We don’t think U.S. production is going to stop the re-balancing of the market this year. It’s not enough to counter the cuts that are in place, particularly if they’re being extended.”

“We think next year will be more problematic. The shale drilling will accelerate and U.S. shale alone could meet the new demand in global growth.”


U.S. drillers

IHS Markit expects U.S. shale to grow by 900,000 bpd by the end of 2017. By the end of 2017, or entering the early 2018 the U.S. will be giving the record amounts of oil. Based on some U.S. government reports, their production rose to 9.3 million barrels in previous weeks.

“You can certainly say a lot of shale today will be competitive between $40 and $50 a barrel. The question mark is what’s going to happen with costs. We really think the costs this year in the Permian will go up 15 to 20 percent.”  (Daniel Yergin vice chairman of IHS said. “Rising costs will temper activity somewhat.”

Yergin stated that shale is now at medium cost production.

Permian, West Texas

Permian is currently the most active shale. But drilling could open up Eagle Ford in Texas or Bakken in North Dakota, following the upsurge in prices.

“Other plays still remain on the sidelines in this $50 environment. When we were growing at a million barrels in the U.S., it wasn’t Permian. It was Bakken and Eagle Ford.” (Helima Croft, RBC)

“The other thing about shale is it has a very high decline rate. The shale did come back stronger. Rigs are returning and for now it remains largely a Permian story.”

Analysts have expected the market to get a backup from the summer driving season. So far, U.S. gasoline demand has been softer than expected.  That could definitely impact the market, and it should see higher prices this summer .


The upcoming week: Crude Oil Futures

, ,

Short Recollection of last week


Beginning by observing the Oil futures; they settled on nearly plane levels on Friday. But still registered the first weekly gain in a month. Inspired by the news that key crude producers will extend output cuts to the period after June;

Firstly, on Thursday, U.S. West Texas Intermediate crude came to the highest since May 3 at $48.22.

Secondly, the U.S. benchmark went up for $1.62, or around 3.4%, after posting three consecutive weekly declines.

Noteworthy, in London Futures Exchange, Brent oil for July delivery added on 7 cents. Later coming to settle at $50.84 a barrel by closing. The global benchmark hit $51.16 a day before. This level was not seen since May 2.

Thirdly, observing the weekly movement, London-traded Brent futures recorded a gain of $1.74, or nearly 3.5%.



OPEC and non-OPEC oil producing countries  are discussing the extension of a global supply cuts.

Recently, some officials have suggested the possibility of further & deeper production cuts to help clear a supply glut & rebalance the market completely.

Starting this week, crude sank to a five-month low. Loped by concern over increasing U.S. crude output that has shaken investors’ faith in the ability of OPEC to rebalance the market.

Fourthly, data from energy services company Baker Hughes showed on Friday that U.S. drillers last week added rigs for the 17th week in a row. Indicating that further gains in their production are ahead.


The further U.S. drilling

The U.S. rig count rose by 9 to 712, extending an 11-month drilling recovery to the highest level since August 2015.

Observing natural gas futures for June delivery, they rose 4.8 cents. Which makes it the highest level since January 26 at $3.424 per million. British thermal units, up 1.4% for the session and about 4.9% higher for the week.

All the participants in the market race will see recent weekly information on U.S. stockpiles of crude and refined products on Tuesday and Wednesday.  To groove the strength of demand in the world’s largest oil consumer.


Meanwhile, investors will keep an eye out for a monthly report from the IEA for further evidence that global producers are complying with an agreement to reduce output this year.


Inspired by; here are some important next week’s events which will likely have impact on market & commodity trades:


Tuesday, May 16

The IEA is going to publish its monthly evaluation of oil markets.

Later in the session the API will publish its weekly report about U.S. oil supplies.


Wednesday, May 17

The U.S. Energy Information Administration is to release weekly data on oil and gasoline reserves.


Thursday, May 18


United States government will give a weekly report about Gas supplies reserves.


Friday, May 19

Baker Hughes operates in more than 90 countries, giving the oil and gas industry  info with services for oil drilling, formation evaluation, completion, production and reservoir consulting. It will release weekly data on the U.S. oil rig count in Friday.


Oil Production; Summary of Main Oil News this week

, ,

Russian energy ministry and output cut talks

The main official of Rosneft, Igor Sechin, said on Saturday that the Russian energy ministry had his backup in discussions over oil production cuts.

“The most important thing is to have a mechanism to defend our interests.”

In previous months, Sechin has expressed some suspicions about the ability of the OPEC. And its power to influence oil markets amid a shale oil production boom in the United States.

The countries: Oil producers, including OPEC and non-OPEC; agreed to cut output for 1.8 a day. This decision dates from last year, and will be active till June the 30th. It aims to reduce global oil inventories.

The Oil producing countries will meet later this month in Vienna, to discuss a possible extension of the deal.


Georgia nuclear plant construction (Southern Co)

Georgia Power and Westinghouse decided to transfer the Project management of Georgia nuclear power plant expansion, to Southern Co.


The temporary agreement until June 3 will allow construction of the plant expansion to continue.

Westinghouse Electric Co filed for bankruptcy in March, was hit by billions of dollars of cost overruns. At four nuclear reactors under construction, including at the Georgia project and another in South Carolina.

The Georgia project is owned by a group of utilities led by Southern Co.

Gasoline in India

Firstly, the gasoline consumption growth has been slowing since the middle of 2016, after rising for the previous two years.

Secondly, observing the last 9 months we see that consumption growth for most other fuels used for cooking and transportation is also slowing down.


Based on the current data, demand for liquefied petroleum gas and kerosene used for cooking, heating and lighting as well as diesel used for transport; all show signs of leveling off or falling in the first four months of 2017.

These trends maybe come from the demonetisation of large-denomination bank notes in India. They were announced at the start of November as part of the government’s anti-corruption campaign.


Crude Oil prices Impact:


Rising crude oil and refined fuel prices over the last year are also likely to have constrained the growth in consumption and other fuels.

Observing the retail gasoline prices, we note that they rose by around 10 percent between January 2016 and January 2017. While diesel prices climbed by almost 8 percent. (Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Gas)india

India’s middle class is pretty sensitive to increases in prices & costs, so they are curbing a demand for Oil. Their middle class, urban as well as rural, is emerging very fast.

Nevertheless the recent slowdown in consumption growth for gasoline and other fuels, it is too early to determine if the deceleration is temporary linked to demonetization and price rises or something more lasting.

India as a source of oil demand:

Noteworthy, India has been one of the most important sources of oil demand growth during the cuts. So any extended slowdown in consumption growth, would make the mission of global market harder. The rebalancing will be way more complicated.


U.S. Oil Imports Decline; Crude Inventories tumble;

, ,

Crude Reserves

Observing the U.S. crude reserves, they had the biggest one-week fall down since December. It happened last week as imports fell down roughly. Furthermore, inventories of refined products also declined. Helping aliment of oil prices that were down by worries about oversupply.

Crude inventories USOILC=ECI fell 5.2 million barrels in the week to May 5. EIA data showed, rather compared with expectations for a decrease of 1.8 million barrels.  Crude stocks were the lowest since February. Leveling at 522.5 million barrels.

Regarding U.S. crude imports USOICI=ECI, they dropped in previous week by 799,000 barrels per day. Which makes it the largest weekly drop since the middle of February. It came to just 6.9 million bpd. Since the beginning of March, it’s happening for the first time that they have been below 7 million bpd.

Stocks at the Cushing, Oklahoma, conveyance center for U.S. crude futures USOICC=ECI went down to 438,000 barrels.



Speaking about Crude futures, they rose. Based on the data which came after overpassing weeks of pressure.. Mostly over worries that a deal between OPEC and non-OPEC producers about cutting the outputs may not have expected effect. And was not having the desired impact on market prices.

By 11:12 a.m., U.S. crude futures CLc1 were up $1.30, or 2.8 percent, at $47.18 a barrel, and Brent crude LCOc1 rose 2.5 percent, or $1.25, to $49.98 a barrel. (Reuters)

However, U.S. production went up again, and refining runs declined. This made and effect of giving the analysts a pause. They didn’t have to worry about the market’s brisk increase.



“The highlited crude oil drawdown number is doubtless supportive. However, it could act something like a shooting star.

The refinery usage-rate has come pretty down. Due to moments after topping out, a couple of weeks ago.” (John Kilduff)

Refinery crude runs USOICR=ECI were down 418,000 bpd. Their utilization rates USOIRU=ECI declined by 1.8 percentage points to 91.5 percent of overall capacity. Happening right after hitting a record 94.1 percent  in the period of three weeks earlier. This is all based on EIA data.

Gasoline stocks USOILG=ECI fell 150,000 barrels.

Distillate stockpiles USOILD=ECI, they also include diesel and heating oil. It has dropped 1.6 million barrels. In comparison with expectations for a 1.0 million-barrel draw.

Notably, U.S. crude production continued to bloom, rising to 9.31 million bpd. While only a week earlier it came from 9.29 million bpd.


Outputs still growing

“Growing oil output in the U.S., which achieved its highest level since August 2015, will remain a spiny sharp issue for price bulls.”  Abhishek Kumar was commenting this subject.

He is a senior energy analyst at Interfax Energy’s Global Gas Analytics in London.(Reuters)

U.S. Oil outputs are making a fuss with global Oil supplies and Oil prices. Will OPEC countries succeed in cuts and market rebalance, only time will show.


Oil prices lower every day; OPEC’s effective and efficient decisions needed


Today, it was a day of 5-month lows in Oil prices. This happened because of bothers on OPEC glut, and whether it would be extended. Nevertheless promises from Saudi Arabia about Russia’s preparation to join OPEC’s future cuts.


Low Prices of Oil

U.S. West Texas Intermediate crude oil futures  were more than 3 percent down in early trading. They came to a price of less than $44 a barrel. Which makes it the lowest since Nov 14. Yesterday, oil was down for 4 percent.

Brent Crude also went down for 3%. It went to a price less than $47. The lowest since november the 30th. The 30th of November was the date when OPEC activated a price rally. The day they announced that the output cuts are to start in the first half of 2017.

Trade losses

Both landmarks sleeked losses to trade near Thursday’s close by 1320 GMT. “OPEC and non-OPEC nations were really near to agreeing a deal on supply cuts.” said Adeeb Al-Aama, Saudi’s OPEC Governor.

  • “Based on today’s data, there’s a growing conviction that a six-month extension may be needed to rebalance the market, but the length of the extension is not firm yet.”

Deeper cut is not so likely. Speculations say that OPEC indeed will extend the cuts on May 25th. But the question is what is initially good about this. The 1017 has and will have 1.8 million bpd. That is the agreement which OPEC countries made in the beginning.

Hedge funds had speeded up decrease of their long positions. Thursday was a day when Brent crude trading volumes came to a record high. Counting about 542,000 contracts.

Pierre Andurand is the official in one of the worlds largest funds specialising in oil. He busted up his fund’s last long positions in oil last week. He is now running a very reduced risk at the moment.

“It is now-or-never for oil bulls,” said U.S. commodity analysis firm The Schork Report. They either put up a defense here or risk further emboldening the bears for a run at the $40 threshold (for WTI).” (Reuters)


Brend And WTI Futures

Both Brent and WTI futures are down about 17 percent so far this year despite OPEC efforts to support prices. The benchmarks are trading around levels last seen before the joint deal to cut output was first announced.

“So far OPEC’s strategy to draw down inventories has not worked.” (Neil Beveridge)

” If their strategy is to have any chance of success.. It is evident to us that OPEC will need to keep the output cuts active way more than the next six months. ”

Adding to cares about protruding inventories, traders pointed to exalted U.S. oil output. It is up more than 10 percent since mid-2016 to 9.3 million bpd. Which makes it almost matching output of top producers Russia and Saudi Arabia.

“Any likelihood of an increase in the level of cuts remains slim with OPEC officials playing down this possibility.” said James Woods, global investment analyst at Rivkin Securities. (Reuters)


Bar nickel inch higher; beside multi-week lows, and oil price collapse




Marginally higher trade among base metals traded on the SHFE. Due to weaker dollar during Asian morning trade on Friday May 5. But there remained near multi-week lows following an overnight collapse in the oil price. Nickel took the uptrend, as expectations of increased supply continued to push prices down.

“European markets are buoyed by the prospects of centrist Emmanuel Macron winning the second round in the French presidential election on Sunday. [May 7]”

The strength in the European markets had pushed the dollar down yesterday’s night. Reaching a November 2016 low of 98.695. Dollar index had recently rebounded to 98.78 as of 04:32 BST. But it was still much lower compared with 99.38 at approximately the same time on Thursday.

Overnight Oil Collapse

Following, an overnight collapse in the price of oil continues to keep SHFE base metals prices under pressure this morning.

The oil price is now back to its lowest point since mid-November with WTI oil sitting at $45.51 a barrel and below the level that prevailed before the OPEC’s oil production ceiling. (According to NAB.)

Despite the pressure, SHFE bases metals prices are inching higher. The exception is nickel, which is bucking the uptrend based on fears over increased supply following the rejection of Regina Lopez as the Philippines Environment Minister on Wednesday May 3.

Nickel below 76,000 yuan per tonne

September nickel contract on SHFE stood at 75,340 yuan per tonne as of 03:54 BST. Down 930 yuan compared with the previous session’s close.

“Nickel led the sector lower as the market reacted to the failure of the Philippines Environment Minister to be confirmed by lawmakers. Ms Lopez had been spearheading the closure of the nickel mining industry due to new environmental laws.”
Appointment of  Lopez as DENR secretary came as a glimmer of hope for nickel prices amid a weakened Chinese stainless steel sector. Also a number of China-backed nickel pig iron projects coming on stream in Indonesia.

Since the country relaxed its ban on the export of unprocessed ores in January, Indonesia’s first nickel ore shipment arrived in China on Monday May 1.

A possibility that Indonesia may expand its export quota, is adding to fears of increased supply in the market.
Union workers at Glencore plc’s Raglan nickel mine

have voted 99.6% in favour of a strike mandate. Means that the USW’s negotiation committee for the mine has the authority to initiate a strike if they consider it suitable. The Raglan mine, located in the Nunavik region of northern Quebec, produces more than 37,000 tonnes of nickel-in-concentrate annually.

Copper up marginally, but the pressure is present

June copper contract on SHFE stood at 45,200 yuan per tonne as of 03:54 BST. Up 20 yuan compared with the previous session’s close.

In the mean time, the LME’s three-month copper price stood at $5,530 per tonne as of 04:48 BST. Down 0.19% from last close.  LME copper inventories rose a net 32,925 tonnes to 317,850 tonnes, with 29,275 tonnes going into Busan, after a rise of 31,250 tonnes on Thursday.
Observing the supply side, Southern Copper said a strike at its Peruvian operations in April caused a production loss of

“only 1,418 tonnes of copper”.

Oil immerses, on U.S. stock decline


Oil prices tumbled lower today, May 3. Right after the U.S. government data showed a smaller-than-expected decline in domestic crude inventories. There was also shown a weak demand for gasoline. And it is feeding bothers about a supply glut.


Oil Numbers & Data

Benchmark Brent crude LCOc1 was down 8 cents at $50.38 a barrel.

U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude CLc1 was down 18 cents at $47.48 a barrel at 11:33 EST.

Weekly crude stocks fell by 930,000 barrels to 527.8 million. Which makes it less than half the 2.3 million-barrel draw that had been in forecast. (EIA)

“U.S. domestic production increased again, and continues its steady climb.” said John Kilduff. (Again Capital hedge fund partner in New York.)

Noteworthy, sharp drop in imports turned what would have been an increase in stocks into a small drawdown.

EIA data also showed gasoline stocks rose by 191,000 barrels, which was much less than the 1.3 million-barrel gain that had been forecast. However, gasoline demand slipped 2.7 percent over the last four weeks from the same period a year ago.

  • “This is continuing a trend since the beginning of the year in which sales have been lower and that is casting a shadow on the market and pressuring crude oil prices.” Andrew Lipow, president of Lipow Oil Associates in Houston. (Reuters)

While the market remains anchored on U.S. production, oil investors continue to watch.. And think whether producing countries have been complying with their 2016 deal to cut output around 1.8 million bpd by the middle of the year.


Russia’s position


Russia’s oil cut exceeds level demanded in OPEC-led pact. Under the deal, Russia promised to cut its average daily production gradually by 300,000 barrels to 10.947 million bpd. From the October level of 11.247 million bpd.

With global crude inventories still bulging, investors are now focused on whether OPEC and others will agree to extend the cuts to the second half of the year. This will most probably become true on May 25th.

Russia, contributing the largest production cut outside OPEC, said that as of May 1, it had curbed output by more than 300,000 bpd. Since hitting peak production in October.

Russia has achieved its reduction target a month ahead of schedule. OPEC production showed the group’s compliance had fallen slightly.

Alexander Novak, Russian Energy Minister has said he would meet managers of key Russian oil producer before the OPEC event. He wants them to discuss extending the cuts. That meeting has yet to take place.

Russia’s Deputy Prime Minister Arkady Dvorkovich refused to comment about this subject when asked today.


More Oil from East


  • “Although OPEC is expected to extend a self-imposed output cap by another six months, it would be a challenge convincing several non-OPEC members to join the endeavor.” Said Abhishek Kumar, senior energy analyst at Interfax Energy’s Global Gas Analytics in London. (Reuters)

According to some news by Reuters it is clear that there was more oil from Angola and higher UAE output than originally. Thought meant OPEC compliance with its production-cutting deal slipped to 90 percent in April. From a revised 92 percent in March. Certainly, there are a lot of manipulations happening in the Oil market. Will it come out stronger after the May 25… We will see.



Oil market Pressure remains Inevitable, but prices Went UP a bit this morning



A short revision & Today’s prices

Followed by last week’s huge losses, Oil prices recovered today. Inspired by OPEC’s ideas to extend a supply cuts in next 6 months, it made a market prices rise.

While the relentless rise in U.S. oil outputs is making a fuss on supply’s side.

“U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude oil futures CLc1 added 26 cents, or 0.5 percent, by 0401 GMT (12:01 a.m. ET), but were still below the $50 mark pierced on Friday at $49.88 a barrel.
Brent crude futures LCOc1 rose 30 cents, or 0.6 percent, to $52.26 per barrel. “ (Reuters)

Last week’s oil prices seemingly fell, backed up by ornery high crude supplies coming from the U.S. Despite OPEC’s possible production cuts extensions by 1.8 million bpd in next 6 months, the end of last week represented markets impossibility to handle artificially caused production surplus from U.S.

There are also some non-OPEC countries who accept the decision about cutting the production in following 2H17.

U.S. drillers

U.S. drillers are constantly adding some new oil rigs. It is now 14th week in a row, and the production has extended to 688 rigs. Extending also the 11- month recovery that will boost U.S. shale production in May.

It will be the largest monthly supply increase in more than last 2 years. It will have a huge impact on OPEC’s decision.

“Since its trough on May 27, 2016, producers have added 372 oil rigs (+118 percent) in the U.S.,” Goldman Sach said

U.S. crude production is at 9.25 million barrels per day (bpd) C-OUT-T-EIA, up almost 10 percent since mid-2016 and approaching that of OPEC’s top exporter Saudi Arabia.

– “WTI oil slipped back below the $50 per barrel level, amid concerns that the lack of inventory draw down since the OPEC production cuts is a sign that the cuts are not enough to rebalance supply and demand and put a floor under prices,” said William O’Loughlin, investment analyst at Rivkin Securities in a note on Monday. (Reuters)

WTI and both the Brent Crude Oil benchmarks are now down for more than 7.5 % since the end of the last year. Rather it makes a serious difference compared to 2016 period.

OPEC is planning to extend the output cuts. But there comes a very tricky question itself. If a Panel really decides to cut the outputs, will anything change?



Persistence in Goals as a key to success ?

U.S. drillers and U.S. policy Is persistent, although they are aware that market imbalance comes straight out their extra engaged oil rigs. Oil market is suffering.
Steel market is suffering too. Is U.S. market really that liberal? And ready to accept some natural changes, and prices coming from other sources even if lower than theirs (China’s steel for example). Competitive prices which have all the rights in this world to stay and fight the markets without being questioned as dumping prices?

Not every economy in this world has the power to affect trade and prices when they feel to. Speaking about Oil, OPEC’s agreements are destroyed and will again be if they do not find a solution for bordering their Oil from U.S. Oil. Which Will not easily happen.

OPEC’s possible extensions and an expected fall in Iranian production lent markets some support on Monday, traders said.

“Iran’s crude oil exports are set to hit a 14-month low in May, suggesting the country is struggling to raise exports after clearing out stocks stored on tankers.
Iranian oil exports, especially to its core markets in Asia, had soared since the ending of most sanctions against it in January 2016. (R.)”

This will again be an Agitated week on world’s OIL MARKET.

North Korean missile test failed. Oil falls after

14 Apr 2017 LME/COMEX/NYMEX Closed for Good Friday LME/COMEX/NYMEX
17 Apr 2017 LME Closed for Easter Monday LME


Friday, as well as Monday are holidays for LME. Friday was holiday for all the stock exchanges, while LME is not open yet. Tomorrow is the first Post-holiday working day.

Post Easter Holiday News


Monday. After the three-day Easter break, crude oil felt in trading. The United States is continuing to add output. As well as that, they are undermining OPEC effort to support prices. Also, as the market digested North Korea’s failed missile launch on Sunday.

In the beginning, benchmark “Brent crude futures were down 49 cents at $55.40 at 0310 GMT. On Thursday, before the break closed most major markets, they settled up 3 cents at $55.89 a barrel.”

Reuters: “West Texas Intermediate crude futures were also down 47 cents at $52.71 a barrel. They rose 7 cents to $53.18 on Thursday. Both benchmarks last week rose for a third consecutive week. With Brent adding 1.2 percent over the four days before the Good Friday holiday and WTI up 1.8 percent.”




Markets were subdued to start this trading week. The major trading center in London is closed for holiday even on Monday (today). Following, markets feel pressure and more geopolitical tensions over North Korea. Sunday they launched a ballistic missile, which has failed because it blew up immediately.

“The United States is working with allies and China on responses to the failed test! ” (D.T.’s security adviser said on Sunday.)

As a sign that output gains, crammers in the U.S. added rigs last week for a 13th consecutive week.


“They added 11 oil rigs in the week to April 13, bringing the total count up to 683.” (Baker Hughes, Energy services firm said.) That is the highest in about two years. <RIG/U>


US act


United States is constantly irritating OPEC with its increasing outputs. In the meantime, they are also irritating other major oil producers who made a deal to cut outputs. Curbing output sustains a rally in prices in a market that has been oversupplied since 2014.

“U.S. crude oil production has climbed to 9.24 million barrels per day. (EIA data). That makes the U.S. the world’s third-largest producer after Russia and Saudi Arabia.”

“Non-OPEC compliance will improve over the next two months with Russia driving the largest reductions in volume terms.”( BMI info)

“Kazakhstan is likely to continue to exceed its quota given strong output from the Kashagan field.”