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The OPEC Monthly Oil Market Report (MOMR) for December released Wednesday provides OPEC's outlook for crude oil market developments for the coming year with key developments impacting oil market trends in world oil demand and supply.

 OPEC MOMR DEC

MOMR Highlights

  • Global oil demand is projected to grow at around 1.53 mb/d in 2017, in line with last month’s forecast. China is projected to lead oil demand growth in the non-OECD, followed by Other Asia – which includes India – and OECD Americas.
  • In 2018, world oil demand is expected to grow by 1.51 mb/d. 
  • Non-OPEC oil supply growth for 2017 now stands at 0.81 mb/d, representing an upward revision of 0.15 mb/d from the previous report.
  • For 2018, the forecast for non-OPEC supply growth has been revised up by 0.12 mb/d to now stand at 0.99 mb/d. The 2018 forecast for non-OPEC supply is associated with considerable uncertainties, particularly regarding US tight oil developments.
  • US oil supply is now expected to grow by 1.05 mb/d next year, representing an upward revision of 0.18 mb/d and following growth of 0.61 mb/d in 2017. 
  • In November, OPEC crude production decreased by 133 tb/d, according to secondary sources, to average 32.45 mb/d.

Oil Market Highlights

Crude Oil Price Movements

The OPEC Reference Basket surged near 10% to $60.74/b in November, its highest since June 2015. Crude futures prices improved further to levels not seen since summer 2015. Continuing bullish oil market fundamentals and optimism that OPEC and non-OPEC would extend the production adjustment which would support the oil market over November. ICE Brent averaged $5.22 higher, at $62.87/b, while NYMEX WTI increased $5.07 to $56.66/b. The ICE Brent/NYMEX WTI spread widened to $6.20/b. Money managers raised net long position in ICE Brent and NYMEX WTI futures and options to 934,463 contracts. Brent and Dubai remained in backwardation, while the WTI contango eased.

World Economy

The global GDP growth forecast remains at 3.7% for both 2017 and 2018. US growth was revised up in both 2017 and 2018 to 2.3% and 2.5% respectively. Growth in the Euro-zone remains unchanged at 2.3% in 2017 and 2.1% in 2018. Japan’s growth in 2017 remains unchanged at 1.6%, while 2018 expectations have been lifted to 1.4%. India’s soft 3Q17 GDP growth led to a downward revision to 2017 GDP from 6.8% to 6.5%, while growth in 2018 remains unchanged at 7.4%. China is seen growing at 6.8% in 2017 and 6.5% in 2018.

World Oil Demand

Global oil demand is projected to grow at around 1.53 mb/d in 2017, in line with last month’s forecast. China is projected to lead oil demand growth in the non-OECD, followed by Other Asia – which includes India – and OECD Americas. In 2018, world oil demand is expected to grow by 1.51 mb/d. OECD will contribute positively to oil demand growth, adding some 0.28 mb/d, whereas the bulk of the growth will come from the non-OECD with 1.23 mb/d of potential growth.

World Oil Supply

Non-OPEC oil supply growth for 2017 now stands at 0.81 mb/d, representing an upward revision of 0.15 mb/d from the previous report. For 2018, the forecast for non-OPEC supply growth has been revised up by 0.12 mb/d to now stand at 0.99 mb/d. The 2018 forecast for non-OPEC supply is associated with considerable uncertainties, particularly regarding US tight oil developments. US oil supply is now expected to grow by 1.05 mb/d next year, representing an upward revision of 0.18 mb/d and following growth of 0.61 mb/d in 2017. OPEC NGLs and non-conventional liquids are expected to increase by 0.18 mb/d in 2018, compared to 0.17 mb/d this year. In November, OPEC crude production decreased by 133 tb/d, according to secondary sources, to average 32.45 mb/d.

The Big Story Is US Oil Production

OPEC US OIL SUPPLY

Product Markets and Refining Operations

Product markets in the Atlantic Basin showed positive performance during November. In the US, higher export opportunities amid unexpected refinery outages product markets provided support. Product markets in Europe also improved, supported by counter-seasonal domestic gasoline demand, despite weakness in the middle of the barrel amid large diesel import volumes. In Asia, product markets showed marginal weakening, as lower middle and bottom of the barrel demand offset the positive contribution from firm regional gasoline consumption. 

Tanker Market

Tanker spot freight rates for dirty vessels were mostly stable in November, maintaining the gains achieved a month earlier and supported by seasonal tonnage demand. VLCC and Suezmax freight rates were flat        m-o-m. Meanwhile, Aframax freight rates declined, mainly on the back of weak rates in the Mediterranean, which also exhibited a decline in clean tankers spot freight rates in November as market activities were limited

Stock Movements

Total OECD commercial oil stocks fell in October to stand at 2,948 mb. At this level, OECD commercial oil stocks are 137 mb above the latest five-year average. Crude and products stocks indicate a surplus of around 110 mb and 27 mb above the seasonal norm, respectively. In terms of days of forward cover, OECD commercial stocks stand at 62.1 days in October, some 1.8 days higher than the latest five-year average.

Balance of Supply and Demand

Based on the current global oil supply/demand balance, OPEC crude in 2017 is estimated to stand at 32.8 mb/d, some 0.6 mb/d higher than the 2016 level. In 2018, OPEC crude is forecast at 33.2 mb/d, an increase of 0.3 mb/d over the 2017 level..

Complete Report 
OPEC News Release 13 December 2017

From The Traders Community News Desk

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