Oil Prices Steady Amid US Sanctions Against Iran

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OPEC, along with Russian Federation and several other producers, has been limiting its output since January 2017 in order to drain a glut of oil that caused a historic price crash. "Oil has scope to appreciate this week on the back of OPEC output cuts, heightened geopolitical tensions, and optimism over stronger global oil demand". The deal between OPEC, Russia and other non-OPEC producers has helped oil prices rise 40 percent since it took effect.

"With China's robust economy anticipated to drive oil demand this year, oil prices could remain supported in the near term", he said.

"That said, there are problems with transporting the oil at present, as the high $12 per barrel discount on WTI Midland as compared with WTI Cushing illustrates".

The increase was mainly the result of higher crude production in Saudi Arabia - the world's largest crude exporter and the de facto head of OPEC - and Algeria, the report said.

But oil ministers have since said other metrics should be considered such as oil industry investment, suggesting they are in no hurry to end supply cuts.

The price of world benchmark Brent crude has risen over the past 28 months, from roughly $26 a barrel in early 2016, to approximately $77/Bbl Monday, as the balance between supply and demand continues to tighten, Kallanish Energy understands.

Figures reported directly from OPEC members showed even deeper declines in production.

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The news of President Donald Trump's decision to pull the U.S. out of the Iran nuclear deal sent oil prices surging, reaching a four-year-high due to the uncertainty that comes with the sanctions that may be reimposed on Iran.

This estimated growth rate was revised higher by 25,000 barrels per day compared to last month's estimates.

OPEC expects non-OPEC supply to expand by 1.72 million bpd this year, which is higher than the growth in global demand.

World oil prices have surged by more than 70 percent over the previous year as demand has risen sharply but production has been restricted by the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC), led by Saudi Arabia, and other key producers including Russian Federation.

President Trump's decision to pull the US out of the Iran nuclear deal "constitutes a major geopolitical shift" which could trigger a move in the direction of "stagflation", a global strategy team at Citi, led by Mark Schofield, said in a research note, CNBC reported.

With the U.S. drillers producing a record 10.7 million barrels a day, according to preliminary weekly data from the Energy Information Administration, the United States is approaching world's top producer Russian Federation, which pumps about 11 million barrels daily. Saudi Arabia said last week it was ready to offset any shortage but would not act alone.

Some market participants believe energy stocks will show more responsiveness to oil's rally.

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