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Saudi rhetoric concealing Opec deal's fragility - #SaxoStrats

Saudi rhetoric concealing Opec deal's fragility - #SaxoStrats

Saudi Energy Minister Khalid al-Falih said that the Kingdom would adhere to its pledges, expressing confidence that OPEC's plan to prop up prices would work.

The price for Brent crude oil was up 2 percent about a half hour before the start of trading in NY to $56.56 per barrel.

The increase has helped fuel a rebound in U.S. oil production, which rose to the highest level since April last week.

"Producing nations want to avoid a slump in prices", he said.

Al-Falih has also said he believes that the oil market will rebalance by the middle of the year, suggesting that the glut of oil will be gone in six months-so the market may need the shale oil, said Flynn.

The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) has agreed to cut production by 1.2 million barrels per day (bpd) to 32.5 million bpd from January 1 in an attempt to clear a global oversupply that has depressed prices for more than two years.

Traders also expect OPEC data this week that will give fresh indications on supply and demand.

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Overall production was 8.95 million barrels per day (bpd) last week, the most since April of previous year. Capping their enthusiasm is USA shale oil, which is likely to limit price increases and usher in a period of greater volatility.

"In the short term", Hansen adds, "I feel the risk is skewed to the downside in response to a combined gross-long of close to 900 million barrels in WTI and Brent that needs to be fed bullish news in order to be maintained".

OPEC states will also gather with major producers outside the group later this month in the Austrian capital to monitor their compliance with the production cuts, which aim to reduce inventories and shore up prices. "We need to see each other's faces", he said. A year ago it announced Vision 2030, a plan to wean its economy off oil.

IEA executive director Fatih Birol told Reuters that oil markets will see "much more volatility" this year even if OPEC and non-OPEC members deliver on production cut plans.

"The market is focused on the build in US production which is almost up to 9 million bpd - up from 8.5 million bpd last June and close to 2014 production levels", said Michael McCarthy, chief market strategist at Sydney's CMC Markets.

OPEC is well aware that the increase in crude prices will cause US production to increase, according to Martin Pelletier, a portfolio manager with Trivest Wealth Management in Calgary.


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