U.S. chill, Iran unrest help sustain oil prices at new highs
U.S. chill, Iran unrest help sustain oil prices at new highs
Crude prices slightly rise
07 January, 2018, 16:42
Brent crude fell 53 cents to $67.70, while West Texas intermediate, the United States benchmark, slid 57 cents to $61.44.
Despite relatively high USA crude oil production, curtailments in production by members of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) and robust global demand supported crude oil price increases in 2017, EIA said. At 1641 GMT, they were up 32 cents at $60.16 a barrel.
WTI prices were supported by data from the U.S. Energy Information Administration late on Thursday showing domestic oil production declined last week to 9.75 million barrels per day (bpd) from 9.79 million bpd the previous week. Prices have rallied almost 50 percent since the middle of the year on robust demand and strong compliance with the production limits.
Beyond a brief intraday spike in May, 2015, these were the highest crude price levels since December, 2014, at the start of the oil price downturn.
The fracking revolution driven by President Obama has turned America into an "energy powerhouse", and this long-term shift "has allowed the U.S. to be less reliant on foreign oil, including from the turbulent Middle East" and Venezuela, says CNN Money. While Saudi Arabia and Iran cut their production in December by 20,000 bpd each, Libya's fell for reasons outside the control of the National Oil Corporation: a pipeline blast temporarily took off between 70,000 and 100,000 bpd off daily production.
Lower domestic crude oil prices made USA crude oil more competitive in global markets and supported record US crude oil exports. US exports of crude oil averaged 1.0 MMBPD through October 2017, on pace for a record high and an increase of 445,000 BPD from the 2016 average.
"The U.S. shale impact is now encroaching on uncharted territory", analysts at RBC Capital Markets wrote this month, saying it had "redrawn the global crude flow map". Inventories are down by nearly 20 percent from historic highs last March, and well below this time a year ago or in 2015.
Oil hit its highest since May 2015 this week, supported by falling inventories, strong demand and high Opec compliance.
The Dukes lost a fumble, had a pass intercepted as Schor was hit while throwing, and committed a roughing-the-punter penalty. On fourth down, Schor scrambled as he was chased to his right and flung a pass into the end zone.
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