Trump to OPEC: ‘Reduce pricing now!’

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The Trump administration's initial announcement that the U.S. expects all Iranian oil imports to stop within just four months roiled markets across the world and set even American allies on edge.

In his latest tweet on the subject on Wednesday, Trump said that the "OPEC Monopoly must remember that gas prices are up & they are doing little to help".

U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures were down 37 cents, or 0.5 percent, at $73.77 per barrel.

Brent crude, the global benchmark, was down 19 cents at $77.20 a barrel while US crude slipped 2 cents to $72.92.

Oil prices edged up on Wednesday, lifted by a report of declining US fuel inventories amid the ongoing crude supply outage at Syncrude Canada in Alberta, which usually supplies the United States.

"On the bearish side both Saudi Arabia and Russian Federation are living up to their promise to increase output", said Tamas Varga of oil broker PVM.

US President Donald Trump has tried to calm jittery oil markets by suggesting Saudi Arabia is willing to use up to 2 million barrels per day in spare capacity to meet any supply shortages arising from US sanctions on Iran, writes Nassir Shirkhani.

Oil output cuts by OPEC and allies, including Russian Federation, since January 2017 have reduced a glut of crude.

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NAB said its oil price forecasts "point to Brent spending the next few months largely in the mid-to-high $70s (per barrel) range, although meaningful OPEC-Russia output increases could push prices lower later in the year and higher USA shale production should impose an upside limit on WTI".

OPEC and Russian Federation announced in June they were willing to raise output to address concerns of emerging supply shortages due to unplanned disruptions from Venezuela to Libya, and likely also to replace a potential fall in Iranian supplies due to U.S. sanctions.

"People are firming up their numbers of how much Iranian oil exports will be lost, and how much Opec will increase".

Oil Industry experts believe Opec's biggest member can raise output by about 1 million bpd to 11 million bpd and even that would be a tall order in the short term.

The potential trade war between the United States and China comes amid a tight oil market.

US tariffs on $34 billion in Chinese imports took effect as a deadline passed on Friday and Beijing has vowed to respond in kind.

Saudi Arabia on Thursday said that it would be reducing prices of its Arab Light grade crude exports.

OPEC and Russian Federation announced in June they were willing to raise output to address concerns of emerging supply shortages due to unplanned disruptions from Venezuela to Libya, and likely also to replace a potential fall in Iranian supplies due to US sanctions.

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