Crude oil retreats from the $50+ heights. To be honest, the markets do not suffer under pressure of instable economy or anticipation of a crisis. The reason hides in psychology of global trading. Shale oil industry in the U.S. comes to life, quickening fears of OPEC turning from the current commitment to cut production. By the way, the oil prices and the USD are melting together, each with a reason of its own. Thereby, the decreasing oil value does not reflect the strengthening of the USD.
Now then, what’s going on with oil? 5 items to understand the market.
1. The U.S.
The U.S. crude inventories rose to the record high of 528.4 million barrels, having added 37 million barrels from year earlier. The shale oil industry survived the crisis and intents to grasp the market share from OPEC. The current volume of the stocks according to the Energy Information Administration will rise next week, because 8 rigs returned to drill oil last week. The Baker Hughes counted 617 active rigs, as in October 2015. The industry is recovering fast – the number of rigs is increasing eight weeks straightly.
2. Goodwill people in Houston, Texas
Last week Houston hosted the CERAWeek conference, one of the most important energy meetings in the world. Participants emphasized the goodwill atmosphere this year and efforts of OPEC officials, who have been smoothing over differences between the organization and U.S. shale companies to calm the markets. However, it would be a mistake to count on smoothing after an all-time high crude inventories and active drilling in the U.S..
3. The more equal OPEC members
OPEC experienced pressure of diverse interests of the members. All members are equal, but Iraq and Iran, as well as Nigeria and Libya, are more equal than others. Put aside two African countries, Iraq and Iran targeted to push up oil production in a rush for petrodollars. Iran just plays its part without taking in consideration the corporate interests. Tehran will boost daily production by 400,000 barrels to achieve and surpass the pre-sanction volume; Iranians will produce 4.15 million barrels per day in 2022. As for Iraq, in the same year the country will reach 5.4 million barrels daily output. Venezuela feels uncomfortable concerning the amount…
4. Saudi “Vision 2030”
Saudi Arabia moves to the new budget structure. In 2030 Riyadh will benefit by the new Investment Fund, replacing the gap made by oil crisis. Next year Saudis will offer Aramco shares to the markets. To get a good profit from the giant, the one and only in the oil industry, hopes to see oil prices much higher than $50. The U.S. oil producers spoil the Saudis’ game. OPEC responded with promising to reconsider the cut off the output.
5. Do not worry
The market is very nervous. Traders would like to earn the money on the new volatility. The prices fell almost 8 percent last week, so purchases prefer to close their positions. At the moment a lot of market players rethink their opened trades on oil futures; if they will trigger a sell-off as a domino reaction, we will recollect the previous March.