The Oil Market Is Already Balanced

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"The US is reclaiming the title of being arguably the world's most relevant crude oil benchmark" because of rising US exports and production, said Michael Tran, director of energy strategy at RBC Capital Markets in NY.

That is drawing investors' focus away from the rise in US production. The dollar index, which measures the greenback against six major peers, decreased 0.38 percent to 89.047 at 3:00 p.m. (2000 GMT).

The environment for investing in commodities is the best since 2004-2008, Goldman Sachs said on Thursday, saying it expects returns of 15 percent over the next six months and of 10 percent over the next year. After falling near $26 a barrel in 2016, the global benchmark oil price climbed above $70 a barrel in January, and the USA price is following suit.

On Friday, the price of Brent crude was up 0.09% to $69.85 a barrel, having earlier returned to the $70 level after three days.

As US production and exports grow, global firms that increasingly buy US oil are offsetting their exposure by trading in US financial markets.

Crude oil price extended gains yesterday as Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC's) strong compliance with a supply reduction pact o set news that US production topped 10 million barrels per day for the rst time in almost half a century. On the other hands, oil refineries processed an average of 16 million barrels of crude oil last week down from 16.5 million in the previous week. Overall market conditions remained strong due to the production cuts and healthy demand-growth. On Wednesday, the agency reported inventory builds of 6.8 million barrels, which beat analysts' estimates.

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The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries has pumped 32.4 million barrels per day (bpd) in January, the survey found, up 100,000 bpd from December. The deal was signed by Tehran and the US, the UK, Russia, France, China, and Germany.

United States crude output surpassed 10 million bpd in November for the first time since 1970, the Energy Information Administration said this week.

OPEC has an implied production target for 2018 of 32.6 million bpd, based on cutbacks detailed in late 2016 and taking into account changes of membership since and Nigeria and Libya's expectations on their 2018 output. In the short run, oil prices could rise quite a bit.

Nonetheless, forecasters are predicting prices will return to levels considered unthinkable during the downturn, despite the US supply. 'These US production numbers are starting to take the wind out of the sails of the crude oil market.

The deal calls on OPEC and 10 non-OPEC countries led by Russian Federation to cut some 1.8 million b/d in supply.

Iranian officials said the Iranian nuclear deal signed in 2015 and that led to the lifting of restrictions on Iran's crude oil exports is absolutely not renegotiable.