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Oil prices stable as OPEC says market is rebalancing

12 October 2017, 12:27 | Austin Hogan

Oil prices stable as OPEC says market is rebalancing

Oil prices stable as OPEC says market is rebalancing

“There is a growing consensus that, number one, the re-balancing process is underway, ” he said after meeting with Indian Oil Minister Dharmendra Pradhan.

Barkindo's speech, delivered by video-link at the Reuters Global Commodities Summit in London, came after the secretary-general said Sunday that "extraordinary measures may have to be taken in order to restore" stability in the global oil market.

Oil prices tumbled from over $100 in 2014 after OPEC nations led by Saudi Arabia cranked up production to try to push out U.S. shale producers which have higher production costs.

Barkindo didn't elaborate on what those additional measures could be and if they would include the main proposal now on the table - an extension of the existing cuts by up to nine months - or something else.

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Rising supply from the US and from other producers outside of the deal, as well as recovery of production in exempt OPEC members Libya and Nigeria, have been offsetting much of the OPEC/non-OPEC production cuts. Oil has found support from the deal but, trading below $57 a barrel on Wednesday, crude is still half its mid-2014 level. The group will meet next month in Vienna to decide whether to extend the supply-cut deal beyond the end of March. Over the past five months, OECD commercial stocks have dropped by 130 million barrels, OPEC's Barkindo said in his speech, but noted that there was still a 171-million-barrel overhang in August.

The price of Brent crude oil is now trading around $57.00 a barrel, having risen from six-month lows below $45 a barrel in June.

The 24 producers that agreed to pump less oil are looking forward to welcoming additional participants in the accord, Barkindo said, without identifying any possible newcomers. "At the moment, there is no talk of an extraordinary meeting", he told media.

"With the market moving into the winter season, distillate fuel supplies are notably tight, representing a change from the excess supplies seen in the last two years", Opec said in the report.



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