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From Joseph Triepke, Oilpro Managing Director Good Morning Oilpro Readers. In this oversupplied market, OPEC has been producing 32.1 mmbpd, above their stated quota of 30.0 mmbpd. This context made OPECs meeting last Friday in Vienna a seminal moment in the 2015 downcycle. But al-Badri knocked the wind out of expectant OPEC watchers when he skipped the part about production levels and quotas in his official statement. OPEC appeared to kick the can, rendering quotas meaningless and suggesting that a production free-for-all lies ahead. With delegates unable to agree on virtually anything (we wonder if arguments erupted over the take-out menu as the meeting ran longer than usual), OPEC has reached a stalemate. Each member supports cuts from every other producer, but each will pump near their own max to offset price declines with volume. OPEC, meet capitalism. Capitalism, OPEC. The oligopolys ability to control prices is gone for now as each member acts in their own self-interest in an
While shales flexibility makes it volatile to price changes, OPEC is opting for a longer-term strategy that includes big deep water projects. OPEC focuses on rival mega projects, lives with shale swing output By: Rania El Gamal (Reuters) DUBAI, Sept 23 (Reuters) - After almost a year of painfully low oil prices, OPEC members are beginning to believe they are winning against upstart U.S. shale producers in a short-term market share contest. Yet insiders and experts say OPEC is looking for a longer-lasting impact on other high-cost production oil field plans, many in deep oceans, with bigger time scales, even if that means a period of cheap oil prices lasting for years. Privately, OPECs core Gulf members say they have resigned themselves to the idea that the U.S. shale industrys high-tech flexibility means it will respond quickly when prices start rising again, making the United States the new swing producer in world oil, the role held for so long by Saudi Arabia. The oil surplus
Bloomberg profiles Apache CEO John Christmann and how he plans to use efficient production to contend with OPEC and low prices. Why This Shale CEO Isnt Afraid of OPEC or Low Oil Prices By: Bradley Olson (Bloomberg Business) Apache Corp. CEO John Christmann didnt just get a new job when he took charge of one of the worlds biggest shale producers in the dark days of the oil market crash in January, he signed on to a corporate makeover. In the past six months Christmann has focused on transforming Apache from a high-flying global explorer into a ruthlessly efficient production machine rooted deeply in West Texas shale fields. Under his watch, Apache has set the pace for an industry intent on moving beyond basic cost-cutting to reset priorities on regions and projects that can thrive with $50-a-barrel oil. Christmann has now accomplished what none of his other major peers have yet managed: hes making more cash from operations than hes spending. That compares to the two years preceding
George Perry weighs in on why it is unlikely that OPEC will be able to permanently eliminate U.S. shale from the global oil picture. Why OPEC cant stop the shale oil industry By: George Perry (Fortune) OPEC is not what it used to be. The cartel of major oil producing nations, dominated by Saudi Arabia, used to meet to collude on cutting production in order to support prices. Now they meet to try to get someone else to do the cutting, and their target is the shale oil industry. In the 2000s, a growing demand for oil coming from China and other emerging economies had driven oil prices from around $20 a barrel to over $100 before the Great Recession in 2008. Rising prices had pushed producers to find new conventional oil fields (they did not get very far) and develop technologies that would profitably mine tight oil sources tar sands and oil shale. By the time the U.S. economy started recovering, fracking oil shale had become commercially feasible. And just in time. All of the 5 million
OPEC expects the oil surplus to disappear as demand grows and U.S. production slows. These factors will contribute to its expected decision to maintain its current production policy. Kuwait Expects OPEC to Continue Policy beyond June By: Andrew Torchia and Dmitry Zhdannikov (Reuters) DOHA, March 10 (Reuters) OPEC is likely to maintain its production policy at a meeting in June, Kuwaits OPEC governor said on Tuesday in the first public comment on what would be a crucial decision to determine the direction of global oil prices in the second half of the year. Many OPEC oil ministers including Saudi Arabias Ali al-Naimi have defended the organisations November decision not to cut production but instead defend market share and curtail the output of more expensive producers such as the United States. The accord sent oil prices below $50 per barrel, extending a sharp decline that began in June amid a global glut of crude. The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries has said
BP released its annual global Energy Outlook report this week and predicted growing demand for OPEC crude as U.S. shale production begins to slow. BP Predicting Slowdown for US Shale Oil Production By: Agence France-Presse LONDON - Booming U.S. shale output, which helped spark slumping oil prices, will continue over the next 20 years but start to slow, increasing demand for OPEC crude, BP forecast Tuesday. The British energy giant revealed its verdict in an annual global Energy Outlook report which covers the period 2013-2035. The current weakness in the oil market, which stems in large part from strong growth in tight oil production in the U.S., is likely to take several years to work through, BP said in the report. World oil prices have collapsed by 60% between last June and January, hit by a global supply glut exacerbated by surging U.S. shale production. In reaction, the global energy sector has slashed investment. At a time when our industry is focused on the rapid response
Oil prices are up more than 30% since January and global demand is increasing. Alex Lawler of Reuters reports on how OPEC tactics during the downturn look to be paying off. Higher oil forecasts suggest OPEC tactics are paying off By: Alex Lawler (Reuters) LONDON, Feb 13 (Reuters) - The worlds three big energy agencies are forecasting higher demand for OPECs crude oil this year, a sign the producing nations strategy to let prices fall is starting to win them back market share from rivals who are cutting output. After an oversupply of world oil sent prices tumbling in 2014, top OPEC exporter Saudi Arabia urged fellow members not to prop up the market and to try to knock out competing sources like U.S. shale, which, because it has higher production costs, had to cut output when prices fell. In reports this week, The International Energy Agency and the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries have raised by at least 200,000 barrels per day (bpd) their estimates of demand for
Goldman is reporting that U.S. producers could increase output even further with declining costs. Goldman Sees U.S. Oil Output Unscathed as Costs Decline By: Ben Sharples (Bloomberg) U.S. producers battling OPEC for market share may increase output further from the highest rate in more than three decades as costs decline almost as fast as oil prices, according to Goldman Sachs Group Inc. The slump in benchmark U.S. crude futures, which are down more than 40 percent this year, is driving producers to move drill rigs to lower-cost fields, the bank said in an e-mailed report today. While theres evidence of some rebalancing starting to occur in the market, that isnt sufficient, it said. A decision last month by the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries to maintain its output target prompted speculation that the group is willing to let crude slide to a level that would slow U.S. production. Smaller member-nations including Venezuela, which have called for action to support prices,
Reuters market analyst John Kemp shares his views on OPECs decision not to change production targets despite slides in oil prices. Kemp: News Of OPECs Demise Has Been Much Exaggerated By: John Kemp (Reuters) LONDON, Dec 3 (Reuters) - The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) last week made no change to its production target despite a 40 percent slide in oil prices over just five months, causing some commentators to pronounce the cartel irrelevant. If OPEC cannot act to defend the prices and revenues of its member countries, does the organisation still serve any purpose? There is an assumption among some commentators that OPEC is only relevant and working if ministers can reach a production agreement in response to shifts in prices, and that strong disagreement is a sign of dysfunction. But the record suggests that ambitious production-cutting agreements are rare, rather than the norm, and that a robust exchange of views is typical. There is nothing new about
OPEC is letting oil prices slide without cutting production to see if North American production can withstand lower prices. So far, the U.S. is holding up with the government forecasting record shale output in November. Businessweek reports on the tactics each side is using in trying to maintain and grow market share. OPEC Finding U.S. Shale Harder to Crack as Rout Deepens By: Grant Smith and Dan Murtaugh OPEC is resisting pressure to cut oil production while demand slumps as it tests how low prices must go to make U.S. shale oil unprofitable. As producers become more efficient, that floor is sinking. The Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries boosted output by the most in 13 months in September, even as crude plunged into a bear market and demand growth weakens to a five-year low, according to the International Energy Agency. Saudi Arabia and Kuwait, the largest and third-largest members of OPEC, indicated the price slump doesnt warrant immediate production cuts, the IEA
With talk of OPEC cutting back production, U.S. crude prices were down Friday while Brent saw rallies throughout the day causing the widest price gap between the two since September 8. U.S. Crude Falls on Worries About Glut, Brent Gains By: Catherine Ngai U.S. crude oil and Brent traded in opposite directions on Friday as a sell-off ahead of Mondays expiration kept U.S. prices down, while discussions of OPEC cutting output put strength into the market overseas. With the two crudes trading lower in the morning, analysts and traders said much of the sell off in the WTI contract was a result of liquidation of long positions before the expiration on Monday. However, Brent saw a number of rallies through the day, pushing the arbitrage between the two grades to $6.74, the widest since Sept. 8. U.S. crude fell 66 cents to settle at $92.41 a barrel while Brent rose 69 cents to settle at $98.39 a barrel. I think overall talk about OPEC cutting back production is giving some strength