Oil Prices Strikes High with Cue from OPECâ€™s Output Cut In Wednesday's trading session oil prices jumped more than eight per cent to a five-week high as some of the world's largest oil producers gathered in Vienna to try to agree a production cut that could be bigger than expected. The Brent crude futures for delivery in January were up US$ 3.83, or 8.3 per cent, at US$ 50.21 a barrel by 1236 GMT, recovering from a drop of nearly 4 per cent on Tuesday, 29th November 2016, and on course for their biggest one-day move in nine months. Brent crude for delivery in February was up US$ 3.76 at US$ 51.08 a barrel. US West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures were US$ 3.63 higher at US$ 48.86 a barrel, a one-week high.
OPEC Ministerial Conference The Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) started its ministerial conference on Wednesday, 30th November 2016, to adopt measures to reduce excess supply to drive petrol prices upward. Sector Ministers of the 14 OPEC member countries attempted to find their way to overcome their differences on how to apply a cut in crude oil production, the first since the year 2008, after reaching a preliminary agreement in the month of September. The idea is to limit the production to a level between 32.5 and 33 million barrels per day (mbd), starting the month of January 2017, from the record volume of 33.64 mbd reached in the month October. The difficulty lies in establishing how many barrels each of the partners should withdraw from the market, with conflict between Saudi Arabia and Iran on the matter. According to the experts the OPEC agreement should not be viewed as a cut to output, but rather be conceived as the partial removal of excess crude oil from the global market.
While there is little doubt that OPEC's agreement to remove about 1.2 million barrels per day (bpd) will tighten the global oil market, there is still likely to be enough crude oil around in the first half of next year. This will likely be the case even if non-OPEC producers like Russia make good on a commitment to cut production by a further 600,000 bpd. Certainly, initial market reaction suggests that investors are looking forward to a substantial tightening of the supply-demand balance, with U.S. West Texas Intermediate crude futures settling up US$ 4.21 at US$ 49.44 a barrel, a 9.6 per cent gain. They earlier rose 10 per cent, the largest one-day move since February, as OPEC announced its first deal to cut output since 2008, after oil prices plummeted from record highs in the wake of the global financial crisis and recession.
Indian Oil Producers Indian oil companies were seen to rejoice the discussion conducted by the OPEC meeting. Major surge was notice in the leading oil and energy producing companies. Hindustan Oil share price made a 52 week high of Rs 69.35 today by rising more than 7 per cent. The share price is currently trading at Rs 68.70 at 10.15 AM on NSE. ONGC share price also made a new 52 week high of Rs 298.60 by rising almost 3 per cent. Aban share price is trading 6.13 per cent higher at Rs 251.90. IGL share price is trading at Rs 845.35, up by 1.97 per cent.
Conclusion What OPEC may well end up achieving is a price floor for crude oil, along with the market realization that the group is still relevant. Analysts at Goldman Sachs, Barclays as well as ANZ said oil prices would quickly fall to the low US$ 40s a barrel if OPEC fails to strike a deal to cut output.
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Article Written by Nabarupa Kanjilal