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Why OPEC Is More Important For Oil Than A Vaccine

Vaccine progress or not, the market is riveted with OPEC actions. And that is because the industry is well aware that even the most promising of vaccine news won’t have much effect on oil demand until at least the second half of 2021. What will have an effect on the oil market - or rather the balance of supply vs. demand - is OPEC.

This week, OPEC has had a couple of meetings. One to review compliance, and one to discuss its next steps. The outcome of the latter would be to take the recommendation so it can be discussed and approved at the full meeting on November 30/December 1.

But it has been tough going. The Joint Technical Committee released a report in the meeting that suggested global oil demand would be lower than previously thought. Now, it sees oil demand growing by 6.2 million bpd over 2020. This isn’t actually new, because this is what they said in the last OPEC MOMR release a week ago. But it is new compared to last month’s MOMR, so it is noteworthy. This represents a downward estimate of 300,000 bpd. That’s a big deal when you’re already up against it with oil inventories. What this means is that OPEC’s original to ease up on the current production quota will no longer have the same effect on oil inventories - because in 2021, oil demand will be 300,000 bpd less than when the original plan was hatched.

There have been many plans of action proposed. Some suggestions call for even deeper cuts - this idea…





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