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Big Oil Is Paying Shareholders Back

1. OPEC+ Sticks to Charted Course, Confident of Market Balance Coming Soon

- The OPEC+ oil group agreed to maintain its crude output increase for December 2021 at the pre-agreed 400,000 b/d despite calls from US, Japan and India to pump more oil into the markets.

- The ongoing energy crunch and natural gas shortage specifically were often quoted at the October 05 meeting, saying lack of gas overheated oil demand, however supply would still overtake demand by Q1 2022.

- Largely helped by terminal declines in Angola and Malaysia, civil strife in South Sudan and recurring technical issues in Nigeria, OPEC+ has maintained a solid compliance rate of 111% in September 2021.

- The revival of JCPOA talks with Iran, assumed to take place on November 29, might bring some thrill into OPEC+ meetings – as of today, with US supply being slower on the uptake, the oil group is fairly satisfied overall with how the production curtailments are working.

2. Big Oil is Focused on Share Buybacks and Dividends

- With almost all oil majors having reported their Q3 results, it seems that the oil industry’s main trend will be focused on share buybacks and stable dividends in the upcoming months.

- Chevron produced the best cash flow in its entire 142-year history, only to announce its intention of increasing share buybacks, keeping CAPEX still below pre-pandemic levels.

- Reticence to splash the cash also stems from systemic…

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