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OPEC’s Efforts Are Paying Off

OPEC

Friday February 23, 2018

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. China buys up U.S. oil

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- U.S. oil exports jumped last year, and China represented one of the largest buyers.
- The Middle East has traditionally been a big supplier of crude to China, but China is increasingly turning to North American cargoes.
- However, WTI recently jumped above the Dubai benchmark, as demand for U.S. oil pushed up WTI. That could put a cap on the volume of oil moving from the Gulf Coast to Asia.
- “At current levels, the strength in WTI relative to Dubai prices doesn’t justify arbitrage flows of U.S. crude into Asia,” Nevyn Nah, an analyst at industry consultant Energy Aspects Ltd., told Bloomberg.

2. OECD stocks close to 5-year average

(Click to enlarge)

- OECD stocks now sit just about 52 million barrels above the five-year average, down from 264 million barrels a year ago.
- Refined product stocks are likely below the five-year average, led by soaring diesel demand over the past year.
- The objective for OPEC to eliminate the inventory surplus “might be close to hand,” the IEA said last week.
- Still, OPEC signaled…

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