Monday, 18 June, 2018

Trump bashes OPEC for 'high' oil prices

Futures in New York dropped as much as 1.3% after the American Petroleum Institute was said to report nationwide crude inventories rose last week Oil prices drop as supplies increase
Preston Stone | 13 June, 2018, 23:16

Pumped further by global trade war fears, oil prices have since surged to multi-year highs, only to then fall back again somewhat, the IEA said.

The world's top crude producers are key partners in the OPEC+ deal, which is created to prop up oil prices by cutting global output.

Mr Trump used Twitter to accuse the Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries of being "at it again", in a fresh verbal attack on the cartel which he blames for the faster than expected oil price recovery. Oil output for Venezuela has been crimped by the nation's economic crisis while USA sanctions on Iran could further reduce that country's output.

Trump's latest tweet comes ahead of a gathering of OPEC members on June 22.

Iran's OPEC governor, Hossein Kazempour Ardebili, fired back quickly at Trump's words.

In the letter, the senators said a run-up in oil prices is "effectively a tax on every American family's discretionary budget" since the price of oil directly affects the price of gasoline. They plan to discuss oil, amongst other things. In response, Saudi Arabia, Iran's rival and the largest producer in OPEC, said it would consider increasing supply.

Senate blocks ZTE deal in rebuke of Trump deal
The Chinese company has been accused of violating USA sanctions by selling sensitive equipment to both North Korea and Iran. The company admitted in 2017 exporting telecoms equipment to Iran and North Korea in violation of USA regulations.

The change in Saudi tone came after major oil consuming nations, including the U.S., India and China, complained about rising fuel prices.

Opec producers and non-Opec countries struck a deal in 2016 to trim production by 1.8 million barrels per day to reduce a global glut of oil.

"To make up for the losses, we estimate that Middle East OPEC countries could increase production in fairly short order by about 1.1 mb/d and there could be more output from Russian Federation on top of the increase already built into our 2019 non-OPEC supply numbers", it added.

Earlier in the session, Brent and US crude had retreated on concerns about rising production in the United States and expectations that OPEC and other producers could relax voluntary output cuts.

Trump sent out his tweet hours after returning to Washington from a summit with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un in Singapore and it was not immediately clear what prompted his comment. Prices nationwide have edged up toward $3 USA a gallon as the U.S. hits its peak summer travel season, still less than the $4 United States a gallon in 2008 during the 2007-2009 Great Recession.

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