Goldman: 'Shock And Awe' OPEC Cuts To Send Oil Higher Soon

Goldman: 'Shock And Awe' OPEC Cuts To Send Oil Higher Soon

Supply issues in OPEC-member Venezuela are also bolstering oil prices as the South American country suffers a political and economic crisis, with Washington introducing petroleum export sanctions against state-owned energy firm PDVSA.

"Disruptions have increased with risks that Venezuela's production decline accelerates following the introduction of additional US sanctions related to the Venezuelan oil industry", Reuters quoted the investment bank as saying.

U.S. WTI futures hit a high of $53.70 per barrel before receding slightly to $53.54 per barrel, a 0.83 percent rise, as of 2:04 p.m. HK/SIN.

Companies added 7 oil rigs in the week to February 8, bringing the total count to 854, pointing to a further rise in U.S. crude production, which already stands at a record 11.9 million bpd.

However, analysts are warning that record United States supply and anticipated economic slowdown later this year might start capping the world's oil markets.

US crude oil inventories rose last week to the highest since November 2017 as refiners cut runs to the lowest since October 2017, the Energy Information Administration said.

"Oil prices have not increased alarmingly because the market is still working off the surpluses built up in the second half of 2018", the IEA said.

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Oil prices rallied yesterday amid signs that the Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC's) production cuts are taking hold.

None of these options are appealing, and all of them are likely to result in higher costs for refined products, particularly the middle distillates such as diesel and jet fuel that are produced in greater quantities from heavy crudes.

In the two weeks since the sanctions were announced, Venezuela's crude exports have reportedly tapered off and shifted toward to cash-paying buyers - such as India.

In the Organization of Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), oil demand was revised down by 0.02 mb/d due to lower economic projections for OECD Americas in 1Q19 and OECD Europe for the whole of 2019, reads the report. In quality terms, it is more complicated.

Venezuela sanctions have arrived in a market that was already likely to be short of medium and heavy crudes because of US sanctions on Iran and OPEC's output cuts. Back in December, OPEC and 10 other producers let by Russian Federation agreed to restrict oil production collectively by 1.2 million barrels a day for the first half of 2019.

It said OPEC crude output was 930 thousand b/d lower in January at 30.83 million b/d, hitting a almost four-year low. The so-called OPEC+ alliance aims to prevent another price-crushing oil glut like the one that gripped the market between 2014 and 2016.

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