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Rising Supply Dents Oil Gains

05 August 2018

Saudi Arabia, Russia, Kuwait and the United Arab Emirates have increased production to help to compensate for an anticipated shortfall in Iranian crude supplies once planned US sanctions take effect later this year.

Futures in NY were little changed, following a 3.5-percent slide in the past two sessions.

ANZ bank said on Friday in a note the drop in Cushing inventories were a driver for rising crude oil prices "amid signs that last week's (overall) build in inventories won't last very long".

Meanwhile, Opec's July output climbed as Saudi Arabia pumped near-record volumes and Russian Federation boosted production to levels not seen since it joined the cartel in a coordinated cut two years ago.

Oil prices were steady on Friday, supported by traders placing new hedges in the futures market in anticipation of a decline in US crude inventories, but held back from advancing by the prospect of rising global supplies.

Additionally, Russia appears to have increased its production in line with OPEC's decision in late June to increase its output, with its crude and condensate production increasing 1.4% last month to 11.215 million b/d, the energy ministry said yesterday.

A Kuwaiti official said the country increased production in July by 100,000 bpd from June's average.

Brent for October settlement rose 44 cents to $72.83 a barrel on the London-based ICE Futures Europe exchange. "This could severely dent the competitiveness of USA oil and derivatives in the Chinese market", said Abhishek Kumar, senior energy analyst at Interfax Energy. The contract declined $2.47 in the previous two sessions.

Total products supplied over the last four-week period averaged 20.87 million barrels per day, up by 0.6 percent from the same period past year. The contract dipped $1.82 on Wednesday.

USA crude inventories rose 3.8 million barrels last week, according to data from the Energy Information Administration. Crude stored at the key Cushing pipeline hub in Oklahoma declined for an 11th straight week.

The market's expectation was 2.8 million barrels of crude oil draw.

The kingdom's higher supply, along with that from Nigeria and Iraq, pushed up OPEC's total output by 300,000 barrels a day last month. This is just shy of an all-time peak reached in 2016, according to Bloomberg's survey of analysts, oil companies and ship-tracking data. Crude oil production is now expected to average 11.8 million bpd in 2019.

Rising Supply Dents Oil Gains