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Oil falls on US-China trade dispute

22 June 2018

After falling to sub-$30 a barrel in early 2016 for Brent, the global benchmark, and West Texas Intermediate, the United States benchmark, oil prices have risen to about $76 and $67 a barrel respectively. Meanwhile, Nigeria's Bonny Light crude oil has maintain an global price of $73.44 per barrel, higher than the Organisation of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) basket price of $73.35 per barrel.

Oil's market report for the month of June by EIA and Opec showing a stable demand growth while Non-Opec supply growth increased a bit.

U.S. shale producers can step up to meet any supply deficit, but Roberts and Phil Flynn, senior energy analyst at the Price Futures Group, said it takes time for them to increase output because of the nature of shale mining. As U.S. ally, they raised their production levels slightly to appease Trump and keep the prices from further rising.

Significant drops in United States and global oil inventories show consumer demand is at record highs, spurred by the lower oil prices and now a stronger global economy, said Roberts and Michael Cohen, analyst at Barclays.

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WTI turned positive after energy information provider Genscape said crude inventories at the Cushing, Oklahoma hub were expected to have dropped by 2.3 million barrels in the week since Tuesday, traders said.

Escalating trade tensions between the USA and China were also weighing on global markets including oil, said John Kilduff, partner at energy hedge fund Again Capital LLC in NY.

Iran's Opec representative Hossein Kazempour Ardebili said on Sunday that the "market is well supplied, and Opec should abide by its decision up to the end of the year".

U.S. West Texas Intermediate and international-benchmark Brent crude oil posted a volatile session on Monday as investors positioned themselves ahead of the OPEC meeting in Vienna on June 22-23. India's engagement with OPEC is important as India sources about 82% of crude oil, 75% of natural gas and 97% of LPG from OPEC member countries.During the visit Pradhan will deliver a key note speech on "Sustainable Global Energy Future". Iran and Venezuela production for example continue to dwindle due to U.S. sanctions. China imports about 365,000 barrels a day of U.S. crude. Russian Federation and OPEC kingpin Saudi Arabia are pushing for higher output.

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The increase of 300,000 to 600,000 barrels a day - above the current OPEC+ production of about 32 million barrels a day - is a less theoretical number.

Finally, investors are keeping an eye on China because it may follow-through on its threat to put a tariff on US crude oil imports now that President Trump has threatened the world's second largest economy with about $200 billion in new tariffs.

On Saturday, Novak said he and his Saudi counterpart Khalid al-Falih had agreed to propose to the group to up production by 1.5 million bpd beginning in July.

"China isn't intimidated by the threat of USA sanctions". "A meaningful increase in long-haul flows from some of the key OPEC exporters would go a long way in turning the crude tanker market around, especially since it will impact the physical market as well as provide a boost to the all-important market psychology".

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Oil falls on US-China trade dispute