Oil prices fall on OPEC output increase, rising USA crude stocks

Trader thoughts - the long and short of it

The price falls came on the back of an ongoing supply glut that has pulled down crude prices by more than 10 per cent since late May despite a move led by the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) to cut production by nearly 1.8 million barrels per day (bpd) until the end of the first quarter of 2018.

Earlier in the session, the US Energy Information Administration (EIA) said the country's crude oil inventories fell by 1.7m barrels in the week through 9 June, well shy of analysts' expectations for a decline in the 2.7m to 3.0m-barrel range.

In its monthly assessment of the market, the agency said global crude inventories were 292m barrels higher than the five-year average.

"It was a very bearish report", said Commerzbank analyst Eugen Weinberg.

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Data on Wednesday showed usa consumer prices unexpectedly fell in May and retail sales recorded their biggest drop in 16 months. But it said slowing demand growth in China and Europe in particular, as well as increasing supply, meant the deficit should narrow to 500,000 bpd from a prior estimate of 700,000. The oil producers' organisation predicted that world oil demand in the second half of 2017 will jump by 2 million b/d over the first half, to average 97.4 million b/d, helped by a big boost from the Americas, especially the US.

Brent crude futures were at $48.25 per barrel at 0039 GMT, down 47 cents, or 1 per cent, from their last close.

The production cuts have been extended for another nine months.

The energy group retreated 3.3 per cent as oil prices fell after reports showed global supply was rising and USA crude inventories were still increasing.

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The surge in oil production also stems from some OPEC members failing to meet production targets.

"Abu Dhabi swiftly enforced a ban on oil tankers linked to Qatar calling at ports in the UAE, which could lead to a backlog of cargos and increased shipping costs", the report says.

Total OPEC Members' proven crude oil reserves increased by 0.5 per cent to 1,217 bn b at the end of 2016, with a share of 81.5 per cent of total world crude oil reserves.

"Crude oil is still struggling to rebound", said Olivier Jakob, strategist at Petromatrix, adding that Opec's gradual approach to rebalancing was giving United States producers time to drill new wells that were undermining the impact of the group's cuts.

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U.S. crude production this year is expected to rise by 430,000 b/d, with production ending 2017 around 920,000 b/d higher than at year-end 2016. He said at OPEC's meeting in late May that there would be a "marked" decrease in the kingdom's shipments to the U.S.

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