Oil firms as Saudis trim exports, US output forecast reduced

US crude oil production is expected to grow slower than previously expected in 2019. (Reuters)
Updated 13 March 2019
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Oil firms as Saudis trim exports, US output forecast reduced

  • US crude oil production is expected to grow slower than previously expected in 2019
  • Saudi Arabia plans to cut its crude oil exports in April to below 7 million barrels per day

SYDNEY: Oil prices edged higher on Wednesday, supported by planned cuts to Saudi exports and a reduced forecast for US crude output.
International Brent crude oil futures were at $66.93 a barrel at 0039 GMT, up 26 cents, or 0.4 percent, from their last close. Brent touched $67.39 a barrel on Monday, its highest since Feb. 25.
US West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures were at $57.17 per barrel, up 30 cents, or 0.5 percent, from their last settlement.
US crude oil production is expected to grow slower than previously expected in 2019 and average about 12.30 million barrels per day (bpd) the US Energy Information Administration (EIA) said on Tuesday.
Saudi Arabia plans to cut its crude oil exports in April to below 7 million barrels per day (bpd), while keeping its output well below 10 million bpd, a Saudi official said on Monday, as the kingdom seeks to drain a supply glut and support oil prices.
On Sunday, Saudi oil minister Khalid Al-Falih said it would be too early to change OPEC+ output policy at the group’s meeting in April.


Apple’s Cook to China: keep opening for sake of global economy

Updated 23 March 2019
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Apple’s Cook to China: keep opening for sake of global economy

  • Cook’s comments come as Apple weathers sinking sales in China
  • Despite official pledges and repeated assurances that China would continue to open its markets

BEIJING: Apple chief executive Tim Cook nudged China on Saturday to open up and said the future would depend on global collaboration, as the United States and China remained locked in a bitter trade dispute.
“We encourage China to continue to open up, we see that as essential, not only for China to reach its full potential, but for the global economy to thrive,” Cook said at a China Development Forum in Beijing.
Despite official pledges and repeated assurances that China would continue to open its markets, some analysts worry that its reform project has slowed or even stalled under President Xi Jinping, who has sought greater control over the economy and a bigger role for state-owned firms at the expense of the private sector.
Cook’s comments come as Apple weathers sinking sales in China because of a contracting smartphone market, increasing pressure from Chinese rivals, and slowing upgrade cycles. The company reported a revenue drop of 26 percent in the greater China region during the quarter ending in December.
Before those results came out, in a January letter to investors, Cook blamed the company’s poor China performance on trade tension between the United States and China, suggesting that pressure on the economy was hurting sales in China.