Brent Oil Has Surpassed $100 per Barrel
The prognosis for oil prices and supplies suggests that an OPEC+ cut is not currently needed. Iran has relinquished some of its immediate demands in talks to renew a deal to curb Tehran’s nuclear program. Commodity broker Marex also noted significant demand due to pre-winter restocking and industry switching from gas to oil in the face of skyrocketing gas prices.
Russia’s oil output will decline by nearly 20% by the start of next year as the EU embargo on most Russian crude imports takes effect. Other analysts predict that its output will be more resilient.
According to sources, OPEC+ is currently producing 2.9M barrels per day less than its aim, hindering any decision on cutbacks or calculating the baseline for a production drop.
As the peak hurricane season in the United States comes, the global oil supply could suffer. Other than that, additional supply disruptions in Libya cannot be ruled out, and Nigeria’s oil fortunes show no improvement.
According to market sources quoting American Petroleum Institute data, oil stockpiles in the United States dropped by around 5.4M barrels on August 19.
Market participants will pay close attention to US Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell’s remarks at the Jackson Hole central bank conference.
Turn in Global Oil Markets
As Europe faces an energy crisis, global oil markets have provided some comfort, with crude prices falling as speculators get concerned about the global economy. However, the upturn could be fleeting. Oil markets had dodged the apocalyptic scenarios predicted by energy analysts just six months ago when a 1970s-style shock looked unavoidable as rampantly rising post-pandemic demand collided with the likelihood of new supply interruption.
For the time being, cheaper oil is welcomed by world leaders battling decades of rising inflation. US President Joe Biden, whose favor ratings plummeted when gasoline prices reached new highs a few months ago, has not squandered the opportunity to assure Americans that driving is becoming more affordable.
If Western sanctions on Russia substantially close the country’s oil sector, Brent oil might reach $299 per barrel. However, it was trading at $99.72 per barrel on Wednesday, down more than 28% from this year’s high near $140, reached in the days following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine in February.
Oil prices can fall for worthwhile causes, such as technical innovations that reduce demand or increase supply, or for undesirable reasons, such as a recession. And the oil market is in a bad way.
Today’s price is falling not because supply is plentiful but because surging inflation and rising interest rates are fueling recession worries, particularly in Europe.
China’s sluggish oil demand is also dragging on a market that has grown to rely on the country’s insatiable appetite for more crude.
Russia’s August Oil Output Set to Decline
Russia’s oil output should fall in August for the first time in four months due to weaker flows from smaller liquids producers, including Gazprom PJSC.
The country pumped an average of 10.42M barrels of crude oil and condensate per day from August 1 to August 23. According to the facts and figures received by the Russian publication Kommersant last month, this is around 1.98 percent lower than in July.
Oil analysts are keeping a close eye on Russian oil output trends as the world faces its biggest energy crisis in decades. In punishment for Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, Western nations and their allies have imposed sanctions to reduce the Kremlin’s oil income.
So far, the limitations have had little impact on the country’s oil output since Russian producers have been able to shift their exports from Europe to Asia, where buyers are less prone to self-sanctioning and gladly scooped up the extra cargoes.