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Warning Signs Are Flashing For U.S. Oil

Friday May 31, 2019

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 and metals sectors. 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. Saudi Arabia gains market share in China

• China’s oil imports averaged 10.1 million barrels per day over the first four months of 2019, according to Standard Chartered, an increase of 8.9 percent year-on-year. In fact, China posted an all-time record high of 10.7 mb/d of oil imports in April.
• Saudi Arabia is playing a larger and larger role in the supply of oil to China for two reasons, both of which can be attributed to decisions made by the U.S. government. Sanctions on Iran have forced China to look for alternatives. Also, the U.S.-China trade war have scared away Chinese oil importers from American crude.
• In both cases Saudi Arabia has stepped into the void. Of the year-on-year increase of 826,000 bpd in oil imports in China, Saudi Arabia captured more than half of that increase at 453,000 bpd, Standard Chartered noted. Year-to-date, Saudi Arabia has exported 1.552 mb/d to China, making it China’s top supplier, surpassing even Russia.

2. U.S. shale burning through cash

• Roughly 9 out of 10 U.S. shale companies were cash flow negative in the first quarter of 2019, according…






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