Oil prices ticked up Monday morning as market participants appear to expect continued production limitations among OPEC and some non-OPEC producers. Brent crude had risen to $55.67/bbl by 8.00 AM BST, a 0.09% increase following a 2.42% drop last Friday. At the same time WTI was trading at $49.41/bbl, 0.24% up, although losses last Friday reached almost 3%.
Speculators in the US were more reluctant last week, compared to previous weeks. Longs rose 1.91 million bbl, to reach 360.72 million bbl. Shorts on the other hand rose by 4.38 million bbl, outpacing longs as market participants are becoming wary again. Overall, speculators ended up reducing their net position by 2.47 million bbl.
Producers remained much more active in the US, with many longs however, being offset by shorts. Longs rose 22.69 million bbls week on week, to reach 556 million bbl. Nevertheless, shorts also rose, posting a weekly gain of 17.38 million bbl, to 638.76 million bbl. Cumulative net positions of producers rose 5.31 million bbl, to 82.76 million bbl short, highest level since December 2014.
Rigs in the US decreased by two units last week, following a gain of six units the week prior. The count of active rigs currently stands at 748 units, while production was last reported at 9.56 million bpd, according to EIA weekly estimates. Out of that amount more than 6 million bpd is estimated to be unconventional crude oil production, according to the agency’s latest Drilling Productivity Report. Unconventional production is expected to rise almost 80,000 bpd m-o-m in October, to average at 6.08 million bpd.
The Oil Research Team
Supply Chain & Commodities Research