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14 April 2019, 11:16 | Hattie Nash
A pump jack stands at dusk in the Permian Basin area in Texas U.S. Bloomberg Angus Mordant
U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude oil futures were at 64.28 U.S. dollars per barrel, down 33 cents, or 0.5 percent, from their previous settlement.
Production cuts from the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC), in addition to supply risks from Iran, Venezuela and Libya continue to pressure global oil supply and keep oil prices high at Friday's opening.
The perception that analytical worries shift from one extreme to the other as frequently as crude prices rise and fall was not lost on Tamas Varga, senior analyst at PVM Oil Associates, who stated in a research note published Thursday that "There are so many uncertainties surrounding the oil market that it makes it virtually impossible to predict developments for the rest of the week let alone for months or a year ahead".
"We maintain our forecast of 1.4 Mmbpd (in 2019 oil demand growth), but accept that there are mixed signals about the health of the global economy, and differing views about the likely level of oil prices", IEA said.
"Clearly, oil prices at $70/bbl for Brent, are less comfortable for consumers than they were at the start of the year and the IEA has regularly warned of the dangers of prices rising even higher".
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That is down 9.4 percent from 10.23 million bpd in February as state-owned refiners began maintenance.
Current oil demand stands around 100 million bpd.
OPEC revised demand growth down in 2019 to 1.21 million bpd due to "slower-than-expected economic activity".
The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries, Russia and other producers, an alliance known as OPEC+, are reducing output by 1.2 million bpd from January 1 for six months. Conflict between the U.S. and Iran could have also helped boost oil prices considering the risk of President Trump extending Iranian restrictions.
According to the report, only time will tell if the EIA current demand forecast (1.4 mb/d) proves accurate, but the "risks are now to the downside".
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There is worldwide shortage in the oil market due to the interventions in production by the oil cartel OPEC.
Russian Federation and OPEC may decide to boost production to fight for market share with the United States but this would push oil prices as low as $40 per barrel, TASS news agency сited Russia's Finance Minister Anton Siluanov as saying on Saturday.
At the last OPEC meeting in Vienna, the group's members agreed to slash output by 812,000 bpd, with Russian Federation and nine other non-OPEC allies committing to a cut of 383,000 bpd for the first six months of 2019.
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