OPEC cuts 2019 oil demand forecast on global slowdown
14 February, 2019, 10:54 | Author: Eric Barnett
But while Venezuela's crude now accounts for a very limited share of the global oil market, it plays a much more important role in the niche market for heavy crude.
Oil prices have recovered since December, when they fell to a 15-month low, with ICE Brent trading above $62 per barrel this week.
The Organisation of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) said on Tuesday that it had cut its output by nearly 800,000 bpd in January to 30.81 million bpd. "Should oil demand growth come in line with our expectations, the greater supply losses leave risk that.spot prices rally even faster and higher than we forecast".
IEA revised lower its forecast for demand for OPEC crude this year.
Venezuela's diminished importance in the global oil market and as a supplier to the United States has emboldened the US administration to take a tough approach in attempting to oust the government of Nicolas Maduro.
This is contrary to a production benchmark of 2.3m bpd used for the 2019 budget estimates by the Federal Government.
Meanwhile, Barclays bank added, "Oil production is rapidly falling and companies that normally resell Venezuelan crude have not found ways to mitigate the effect of the US sanctions".
USA restrictions on Venezuela's energy sector have crippled exports and threaten to remove some 330,000 bpd in supply from the market this year, according to Goldman Sachs.
The biggest prize in the contest for control of Venezuela and its state oil company Petroleos de Venezuela SA lies more than 2,000 miles northwest of Caracas.
Despite the stunning surge in oil prices this year, Goldman Sachs says there is more to go for the critical energy commodity.
The IEA noted that new U.S. sanctions announced in January on Venezuela's state oil company PDVSA have not so far caused market jitters.
Oil climbed for a second day as dwindling shipments from two of the world's biggest crude exporters eclipsed another big jump in USA supplies.
The American Petroleum Institute (API) reported a smaller-than-expected draw of 998,000 barrels during the week-ending February 8.
A drop in refinery activity helped offset a rise in gasoline supplies, said John Kilduff, founding partner of hedge fund Again Capital LLC in NY. Analysts were looking for a build of 508,000 barrels for the week.
The combination of the OPEC-led production cuts, the increased reduction by the Saudis and in a limited way, the sanctions against Venezuela are helping to underpin prices, but in order to put the market over the top, demand is going to have to increase. -China trade and broader economic concerns, and the approach of seasonal refinery maintenance.
Mars, a medium crude grade from the U.S. Gulf, has moved to a rare premium over Louisiana Light Sweet. -China trade deal. That may be in the works, but it could take several months to feel its influence.
The retail inflation number was much lower than the market expectations, said Tushar Arora, a senior economist at HDFC Bank. At the pumps, motorists had lower fuel costs last month, with petrol down by 2.1p per litre on the month to 119.6p.
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