On Saturday OPEC and non-OPEC producers agreed to raise production by 1 million barrels per day (bpd). Perhaps more important than that, they agreed to return to 100% compliance of the previously agreed upon production cuts of 1.8 million bpd. Production was lagging from struggling countries, i.e., Venezuela, Angola and Libya which effectively equated to a production cut of 2.8 million bpd. Most notably, Reuters reports that Venezuela has been pumping more than 500,000 bpd less than its target. So, let’s clear up the math. OPEC and its non-OPEC partners are effectively saying they are going to be ramping up production by 2 million bpd, 1 million to make up for lost compliance and 1 million in additional capacity. How are the markets reacting? The Brent-WTI spread is getting slammed.
Today the EIA (Energy Information Administration) reported, that crude oil exports from the U.S. have nearly doubled since 2016. In 2017, the U.S. exported 1.1 million barrels of crude per day on average. How did this occur, the EIA states that, “U.S. crude oil exports were supported by increasing U.S. crude oil production and expanded infrastructure.”