Improving outlook for oil prices

FRANCE-OIL-TANKER

Hurricane Harvey and Irma too have raised some supply concerns as the two wreak havoc in the south of the U.S., lifting the crude oil prices as inventories depleted and USA rig count slipped.

As Hurricane Harvey swirled over the Gulf Coast, making landfall in Texas on August 25, refineries including those operated by Exxon Mobil Corp., Valero Energy Corp. and Marathon Petroleum Corp. swiftly worked to shut plants down.

Nigeria has agreed to join the OPEC+ deal once its daily crude production reaches 1.8 mln barrels, Kuwaiti Oil Minister Essam al-Marzouk said Wednesday.

Oil prices rose after the report was published, with Brent crude adding 10 cents to $54.37 per barrel around 0820 GMT.

OPEC on Tuesday forecast higher demand for its oil in 2018 and pointed to signs of a tighter global market, indicating its production-cutting deal with non-member countries is helping to tackle a supply glut that has weighed on prices.

Oil prices rise for 3rd straight session as IEA reports drop in global supply
Even When OPEC Wins, It Loses

"While these bullish forecasts will buoy expectations for a sustained price recovery, we should caution that global oil stockpiles are expected build in the early part of next year", said Stephen Brennock, oil analyst at PVM oil, in a note.

Should OPEC keep pumping at August's rate, the market would see a small supply deficit next year, versus a 450,000-bpd surplus implied by last month's report. Growth is forecast to average 700,000 b/d in 2017 and almost 1.5 mb/d in 2018 as higher production from Canada and the North Sea offsets weaker USA and Brazilian estimates.

Gasoline stockpiles fell 8.4 million barrels for the week, the EIA said - the largest fall on record and due to the impact of Harvey on Gulf Coast refineries. OPEC's current production is still slightly higher than the amount of crude the group estimates will be needed from the cartel this year, at around 32.7 million barrels a day (b/d).

According to the International Energy Agency (IEA), the global demand for oil is set to increase speed faster than expected this year.

The bulls kept coming for crude oil on Thursday, Sept. 14, pushing prices to their best levels in a month and sparking a rally in energy stocks for the second day in a row. Talks will be held with other OPEC members about extending the cuts at an October 4 meeting of the Gas Exporting Countries Forum in Moscow.

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