OIL PRICES - 2015
Last week OPEC held a conference to review the outlook on the bleak oil market. The global economic growth is set to make a small change in forecast in the New Year with a slow steady rise of 4%. This rise was accumulated with the apprehension of the recovering global economy and the expectation of a higher demand for oil in 2015. This confidence has arisen due to the fact that many projects are stable and "comfortably above the five-year average, coupled with the on-going rise in non-OECD inventories, are indications of an extremely well-supplied market."
Overall, OPEC has decided to stick to their previous plans made in 2011 and maintain the production level of 30.0 mb/d. There was in no doubt concern over the rapid decline in oil price at the conference, but OPEC suggested that during this period it gave producers time to invest. This eye-opening decline in oil price had pushed the big players to look further into the future of oil and what action should be taken, to meet future demands.
Overall the conference gave a positive outlook on the future of 2015 with a small but steady increase. The OPEC daily basket price stood at US$66.27 a barrel Thursday, 4 December 2014, Brent crude hit a $63.72 a barrel on Monday 1 December 2014, which is a five year low. Cuts against official selling prices from Saudi Arabia are currently resonated across the global market.
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PLATTS - Asia is a growing market for Russian energy, including LNG, and a potential source of investment for the world's largest producer of resources and minerals. The Kremlin has increasingly looked to build its presence in the Asian region following the imposition of tough sanctions by the US on Russia.
REUTERS - “The Saudis are very angry at Trump. They don’t trust him any more and feel very strongly about a cut. They had no heads-up about the waivers,” said one senior source briefed on Saudi energy policies.
PLATTS - "It is obvious that we need to cooperate with Saudi Arabia, and we are going to cooperate with Saudi Arabia. OPEC plus has been very positive, and we see that in the market situation," Putin told reporters in Singapore during a briefing broadcast on Russia 24.
U.S. OFR - The U.S. Office of Financial Research (OFR) released its 2018 Annual Report to Congress, stating that risks to U.S. financial stability remain in the medium range, reflecting a mix of high, moderate, and low risks to the financial system.