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How Fast Will U.S. Shale Grow In 2018?

Shale

Friday December 22, 2017

In the latest edition of the Numbers Report, we’ll take a look at some of the most interesting figures put out this week in the energy sector. Each week we’ll dig into some data and provide a bit of explanation on what drives the numbers.

Let’s take a look.

1. 2017: Record low oil discoveries

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- In 2017, the oil industry discovered the least amount of oil since at least the 1940s.
- The industry discovered just 7 billion barrels of oil equivalent, down from even the seven-decade low of 8 billion boe posted in 2016, according to Rystad Energy.
- Several years of savage cuts to exploration budgets have led to the dwindling number of new discoveries.
- Moreover, the average discovery is also getting smaller – 100 million boe in 2017, compared to an average size of 150 million boe in 2012.
- The declining rate of new discoveries could create supply shortages at some point in the 2020s.

2. 2018 forecasts differ widely

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- The oil market seems to be improving, and the OPEC extension puts the market on a path towards rebalancing next year. But analysts have very different expectations for what might go down in 2018 with inventories, the all-important metric upon which OPEC is basing its action.
- Inventories typically climb in the beginning of the calendar year on softer demand. Both the IEA and OPEC predict an…

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