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Global Crude Oil stocks fall below 5-year average for first time

OECD Crude Oil inventories have fallen below the five-year average - OPEC’s key measure for its production cut agreement - for the first time since the producer group began cutting back output, a senior of OPEC said.

Commercial oil inventories were 20 million barrels below the five-year average, the source said, as officials from OPEC kingpin Saudi Arabia and key non-OPEC producer, Russia indicated Friday they would begin increasing output in the second half of the year.

The OPEC alliance has lowered stocks close to its five-year average goal much quicker than expected due to supply outages in Venezuela and strong compliance to the 1.8 million b/d output cut deal. The group’s Joint Ministerial Monitoring Committee said Friday compliance was 152% for April.

The inventory figure is significantly lower than OPEC’s most recent estimate of OECD stocks at 2.829 billion barrels as of the end of March. That was just 9 million barrels above the five-year average that OPEC is targeting.

OPEC and 10 non-OPEC producers, led by Russia, are in the midst of a 1.8 million b/d supply cut deal that runs through the end of 2018 to support prices and reduce the global overhang of oil in storage.

Source: Commodity Online

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