Oil prices slide as Trump urges OPEC not to cut supply

07 December, 2018, 00:31 | Author: Elaine Woods
  • Oil prices skid amid global stock market slump, swelling US supply

"We continue to re-tool our export infrastructure along the Gulf Coast to expand capacity, and you continue to see strong demand globally for crude oil".

International Brent crude oil futures LCOc1 were at 61.04 dollars per barrel at 0531 GMT, down 52 cents, or 0.8 per cent from their last close.

Unusually, the oil cartel had scrapped a planned news conference on Thursday at which the members had largely been expected to announce a new reduction in output to stem the recent sharp drop in the price of crude.

Before the six hours of discussions in the Austrian capital on Thursday, Al-Falih had said that "if everybody is not willing to join and contribute equally, we will wait until they are". The alliance has transformed OPEC into a duopoly in which Russian Federation, which isn't a formal member of the cartel but part of the production cuts alliance, is asserting its power.

His comments were echoed by his Nigeriancounterpart. It is expected to show a 1.3 million barrel decline. It fell further on Thursday after OPEC's lack of action and amid broader concerns about global economic growth.

Mr Trump tweeted on Wednesday: "Hopefully OPEC will be keeping oil flows as is, not restricted".

In a sign of easing tensions between the world's two biggest economies, Chinese oil trader Unipec plans to resume U.S. crude shipments to China by March after the Xi-Trump deal at the G20 meeting reduced the risk of tariffs being imposed on these imports, people with knowledge of the matter said.

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The EIA said the United States has been a net oil importer in weekly data going back to 1991 and monthly data starting in 1973.

Falih said a production cut of 1.3 million barrels per day is "excessive" in light of Alberta's decision this week to cut 325,000 bpd in order to drain the Canadian province's brimming stockpiles of crude. Falih said before the meeting that the "OPEC+" group would be happy with a cut of just 1 million bpd.

Experts say this week's meeting of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries will influence the price of oil over the coming months. How strongly it does so could depend on Russia's contribution. A cut of 1 million barrels would be the minimum to support the market, and anything less could see the price of oil fall another $10 a barrel, according to Neil Wilson, chief market analyst at Markets.com.

"The stakes are high now for OPEC".

The OPEC countries will now discuss the meeting with Russian Federation, which is not part of OPEC but has been coordinating its output levels to support the market.

The increase alone is equivalent to the output of major OPEC producer United Arab Emirates.

The US, not a member of OPEC but a significant oil producer itself, has repeatedly called for oil prices to stay low, with Trump using Twitter several times to make the point.

This was the first drop in US crude stocks since September, and it came as exports surged to a record 3.2 million barrels per day (bpd).

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