Strength in Oil ETFs Won't Last if OPEC Has Any Say

An Iranian oil facility on the Gulf island of Khark is seen in a file

Iran says OPEC has ‘not much credit’ left AFP15 Sep 2018

Even though geopolitical turmoil such as that of the U.S./Iran conflict has understandably inspired many experts to forecast grim scenarios for global crude supplies, the IEA report strongly suggests that worldwide producers are more than capable of dealing with shortfalls.

Washington will consider waivers for Iranian oil buyers such as India but they must eventually halt crude imports from Tehran, US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said last week in New Delhi after a meeting of high level officials.

Oil processors in South Korea, Iran's top customer for South Pars condensate, halted Iranian oil liftings in July as banks, insurance and shipping companies wound down business related to Iran before US sanctions the country's petroleum sector kick in on November 4.

Price rises were capped after US Energy Secretary Rick Perry said Saudi Arabia, other members of OPEC and Russian Federation were to be admired for trying to prevent a spike in global oil prices. From August 6, Washington re-introduced some of the financial sanctions while the sanctions affecting the petroleum sector of Iran will kick off from November 4. There are now eight tankers holding 14 million barrels of Iranian crude or condensate, a form of light crude extracted from gas fields, anchored in the Persian Gulf.

If those estimates are right, it would mark the first time since 1973 that the USA has led the world in output, according to government figures.

Saudi Arabia, which is the world's largest crude exporter, pumped 10.49 million barrels per day in August.

The rise in production was the cartel's biggest month-over-month rise in over two years and brought the group's total supply to a nine-month high.

Benchmark Brent crude was up 16 cents or 0.2 percent at $78.34 a barrel after falling 2 percent on Thursday.

Still, supply concerns are supported by data showing that US crude production fell by 100,000 bpd to 10.9 million barrels per day last week as the industry faces pipeline capacity constraints. Oil demand growth in 2019 is expected to rise by 250,000 bpd, a decrease from EIA's previous projection for an increase of 290,000 bpd. On Wednesday, OPEC's analysis arm said demand for the cartel's own crude oil will be nearly 1 million bpd more than the level produced in August.

The U.S. led the world in oil production for much of the last century until the Soviet Union and later Saudi Arabia passed it during the 1970s.

"In the meantime, traders have their hopes up that firmer details on production from OPEC and its allies will come out of the meeting among global producers".

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