Oil prices rise on expectations of more OPEC output cuts

Pump jacks operate at sunset in an oil field in Midland, Texas. (REUTERS/Nick Oxford/File Photo)
Updated 09 August 2019

Oil prices rise on expectations of more OPEC output cuts

  • Saudi Arabia has said it planned to maintain its crude oil exports below 7 million barrels per day in August and September to bring the market back to balance and help absorb global oil inventories

SEOUL: Oil prices rose on Friday, supported by expectations of more production cuts by OPEC amid fears the US-China trade row could lead to a global slowdown, curbing demand for crude.
International benchmark Brent crude futures, were at $57.61 a barrel by 0009 GMT, up 23 cents, or 0.4%, from their previous settlement.
US West Texas Intermediate (WTI) futures were at $52.79 per barrel, up 25 cents, or 0.5%, from their last close.
Both contracts jumped more than 2% on Thursday to recover from January lows, buoyed by reports that Saudi Arabia, the world’s biggest oil exporter, had called other producers to discuss the recent slide in crude prices.
Oil prices have still lost more than 20% from their peaks reached in April, putting them in bear territory.
Global financial markets were rocked over the past week after US President Donald Trump said he would impose 10% tariffs on Chinese goods starting September and a fall in the Chinese yuan sparked fears of a currency war.
China’s yuan strengthened against the dollar on Thursday, on the back of strong export growth in July.
Saudi Arabia, de facto leader of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC), planned to maintain its crude oil exports below 7 million barrels per day in August and September to bring the market back to balance and help absorb global oil inventories, a Saudi oil official said on Wednesday.
“Saudi’s production in September will also be lower than it is currently. This helped crude oil rebound from its lowest level since January,” ANZ bank said in a note.
The United Arab Emirates also will continue to support actions to balance the oil market, the country’s energy minister Suhail Al-Mazrouei said in a tweet on Thursday.
The minister said the OPEC and non-OPEC ministerial monitoring committee would meet in Abu Dhabi on Sept. 12 to review the oil market.
OPEC and its allies including Russia agreed in July to extend their supply cuts until March 2020 to boost oil prices.


OECD forecast sees global growth at decade low

Updated 22 November 2019

OECD forecast sees global growth at decade low

  • Governments failing to get to grips with challenges, outlook says

PARIS: The global economy is growing at the slowest pace since the financial crisis as governments leave it to central banks to revive investment, the OECD said on Thursday in an update of its forecasts.

The world economy is projected to grow by a decade-low 2.9 percent this year and next, the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development said in its Economic Outlook, trimming its 2020 forecast from an estimate of 3 percent in September.

Offering meagre consolation, the Paris-based policy forum forecast growth would edge up to 3 percent in 2021, but only if a myriad of risks ranging from trade wars to an unexpectedly sharp Chinese slowdown is contained.

A bigger concern, however, is that governments are failing to get to grips with global challenges such as climate change, the digitalization of their economies and the crumbling of the multilateral order that emerged after the fall of Communism.

“It would be a policy mistake to consider these shifts as temporary factors that can be addressed with monetary or fiscal policy: they are structural,” OECD chief economist Laurence Boone wrote in the report.

Without clear policy direction on these issues, “uncertainty will continue to loom high, damaging growth prospects,” she added.

Among the major economies, US growth was forecast at 2.3 percent this year, trimmed from 2.4 percent in September as the fiscal impulse from a 2017 tax cut waned and amid weakness among US trading partners.

With the world’s biggest economy seen growing 2 percent in 2020 and 2021, the OECD said further interest rate cuts would be warranted only if growth turned weaker.

China, which is not an OECD member but is tracked by it, was forecast to grow marginally faster in 2019 than had been expected in September, with growth of 6.2 percent rather than 6.1 percent.

However, the OECD said that China would keep losing momentum, with growth of 5.7 percent expected in 2020 and 5.5 percent in 2021 in the face of trade tensions and a gradual rebalancing of activity away from exports to the domestic economy.

In the euro area, growth was seen at 1.2 percent in 2019 and 1.1 percent in 2020, up both years by 0.1 percentage point on the September forecast. It is seen at 1.2 percent in 2021.

The OECD warned that the relaunch of bond buying at the European Central Bank would have a limited impact if euro area countries did not boost investment.

The outlook for Britain improved marginally from September as the prospect of a no-deal exit from the EU recedes.

British growth was upgraded to 1.2 percent this year from 1 percent previously and was seen at 1 percent in 2020.