Oil traders should not lose too much sleep worrying about what OPEC, often unpredictable and quarrelsome in the past, will do when it meets next week.
The producer cartel, say delegates who attend meetings, is odds on to leave output policy unchanged. As a risk factor for oil markets, its May 31 gathering in Vienna barely features on traders’ radar.
A subtle shift may be taking place within OPEC as it heads into its most important meeting in years, according to delegates with the producer group, as the discussion over whether it needs to cut output to defend oil revenues quietly intensifies.
OPEC’s Secretary General Abudulla al-Badri this week urged markets not to panic over the drop in prices to a 4-year low near $81 a barrel, while Kuwait’s oil minister said OPEC was unlikely to cut output when it meets on Nov. 27 in Vienna.
Jeddah (Saudi Arabia) (AFP) - OPEC will keep its production ceiling steady at its "toughest ever" meeting this month, a former adviser to oil kingpin Saudi Arabia said as global crude prices hit a four-year low.
OPEC’s likely decision to leave quotas unchanged next week belies the growing prospect of having to make the deepest oil-production cuts since 2009 as a global supply surge threatens to weaken prices.
The Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries may need to lower output by 1 million barrels a day, or 3%, in the first half of next year, according to Societe Generale SA. Brent crude may drop 20% by June if the group doesn’t reduce the amount it pumps, the Centre for Global Energy Studies said.
Michael Johnston submits:The Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) has seen its influence over the global energy market wane in recent years, as a prolonged economic downturn caused demand for oil to plummet, limiting the effectiveness of the group’s once eagerly-anticipated supply decisions.
LONDON — There is no need to panic at the recent drop in oil prices, the secretary general of OPEC said on Wednesday, saying low prices would curb competing supplies and require the group to pump far more by the end of the decade.
Abdullah al-Badri said output of higher-cost oil supplies such as shale would be curbed if oil remained at around $85 a barrel, while the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries enjoys lower costs and will see higher demand for its crude in the longer term.
OPEC on Wednesday trimmed its forecast for global growth in oil demand in 2013, becoming the second of the world’s closely watched oil forecasters this week to predict weaker consumption.
The move by the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries in a monthly report follows a similar downward revision to oil demand growth in 2013 by the U.S. Energy Information Administration on Tuesday.
OPEC looked set Wednesday to keep oil production levels steady while the outlook for prices appeared uncertain against a backdrop of a fragile economic recovery and falling dollar."Yes, there is a consensus between members," Ecuadorian minister Wilson Pastor-Morris -- who is president this year of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries -- told reporters on the eve of a ministerial meeting at the body's Vienna headquarters."We are happy with current prices ... (we are) not worried about oil rising above 80 dollars a barrel," Pastor-Morris said.