OPEC to reduce exports by most this year, oil movements says

The Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries will cut shipments by the most since December as refiners in the U.S. and Europe conduct seasonal maintenance, tanker-tracker Oil Movements said.

The group, which supplies about 40 percent of the world’s oil, will cut exports by 740,000 barrels a day, or 3 percent, to about 23.7 million barrels a day in the four weeks to Aug. 24 from the period to July 27, the researcher said today in an e-mailed report. The figures exclude two of OPEC’s 12 members, Angola and Ecuador.

“There is a fall underway and it’s a serious one,” Roy Mason, the company’s founder, said today by phone from Halifax, England. “In the crude market the summer is over. What’s going down very visibly is westbound sailings from the Gulf.”

Refiners typically trim imports at the start of the third quarter while performing maintenance as summer demand for gasoline and diesel ebb. Brent crude declined for a fifth day on the ICE Futures Europe exchange in London, trading 0.9 percent lower at $106.46 a barrel at 3:18 p.m. London time.

Middle Eastern shipments will drop by 4 percent to about 17.4 million barrels a day to Aug. 24, compared with about 18.1 million in the month to July 27, according to Oil Movements. That figure includes non-OPEC nations Oman and Yemen.

Crude on board tankers will decline 3.6 percent to 483.9 million barrels, data from Oil Movements show. The researcher calculates volumes by tallying tanker bookings, and excludes crude held on vessels for storage.

OPEC’s members are Algeria, Angola, Ecuador, Iran, Iraq, Kuwait, Libya, Nigeria, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and Venezuela. It will next meet in Vienna on Dec. 4.

By Bloomberg


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