As OPEC seen continuing supply cuts through 2018, oil prices rise

On Thursday, oil prices rose as the producer cartel OPEC and other suppliers look set to continue withholding output for the rest of the year and potentially into 2019.

At 0729 GMT U.S., WTI crude futures (CLc1) were at $64.63 a barrel , up 25 cents, or 0.4 percent, from their previous settlement. Brent crude futures (LCOc1) were at $69.76 per barrel, up 23 cents, or 0.3 percent.

A group of non-OPEC producers led by Russia together with the Middle East-dominated Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) started cutting output in 2017 to rein in oversupply and prop up the market.

Speculation that the restraints on production may be lifted were created being that Brent, off which OPEC prices most its crude exports, has risen by around a quarter since then, which has lead to.

“The group and its allies were set to keep their deal on cutting production for the rest of 2018”, sources at OPEC told this week.

Brent remained below $70 and WTI under $65 per barrel, despite this, weighed by rising crude inventories and production in the United States.

In the last week, commercial U.S. crude inventories rose by 1.6 million barrels to 429.95 million barrels, the Energy Information Administration (EIA) said on Wednesday.

U.S. crude oil production hit a record, at 10.43 million barrels per day (bpd) . That puts the United States ahead of top exporter Saudi Arabia. Only Russia pumps out more, at 11 million bpd.

Shanghai crude oil futures (ISCc1), in China, opened Thursday’s morning session down nearly 2 percent, pushing the new market near to parity with U.S. prices, before closing at 409.7 yuan ($65.18) per barrel at 0700 GMT.

The latest drop takes the fall since the contract’s launch on Monday to 10 percent.

Most analysts expect the contract to establish itself as a third global oil price benchmark next to Brent and WTI, despite high volatility and lingering scepticism about Shanghai’s trading hours, along with doubts about the process for physical delivery of crude under contract.

“Finally, there is an exchange traded price for Chinese crude oil”, Goldman Sachs (NYSE:GS) said in a note to clients.

Goldman said that Shanghai’s start of trading was relatively successful (as)…it is the first onshore Chinese commodity contract that allows direct trading by foreign investors and is denominated in RMB (yuan), indirectly promoting the use of the Chinese currency.

“Shanghai crude futures represent 3 percent of combined WTI and Brent trading volumes since its launch on March 26”,said the U.S. bank.

($1 = 6.2856 Chinese yuan renminbi)

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