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OPEC cuts 2019 oil demand forecast on global slowdown

Gasoil News - Published on Fri, 15 Feb 2019

Image Source: Business Insider
The OPEC Reference Basket (ORB) rebounded in January, gaining more than 3%, or $1.80 month-onmonth (m-o-m), to average $58.74/b. Crude oil prices improved over the month, buoyed by robust market fundamentals with signs of tightening crude supply as well as firm crude oil demand, particularly from Asia-Pacific. In January, ICE Brent was on average higher by $2.57, or 4.4%, m-o-m at $60.24/b, while NYMEX WTI rose m-o-m by $2.57, or 5.2%, to average $51.55/b. The Brent contango structure flattened as the market moved toward balance, while the WTI structure remained in significant contango, reflecting US market fundamentals. The DME Oman forward curve remained in backwardation.

World Economy
The global economic growth forecast was revised down to 3.3% for 2019 and 3.6% in 2018. In the OECD, 2019 US growth was revised lower to 2.5%, following growth of 2.9% in 2018. Euro-zone growth was also revised down to 1.3% for 2019, after growth of 1.8% in 2018. Japan’s growth forecast remained at 1.0% for 2019 and stands at 0.8% in 2018. In the non-OECD countries, China’s growth forecast of 6.1% in 2019 remains unchanged from the previous month, following slightly better than expected growth in 2018 of 6.6%. India’s growth forecast remained at 7.2% for 2019, after 7.5% in 2018. Growth in Brazil remains unchanged at a forecast 1.8% for 2019, following 1.1% in 2018. Russia’s 2019 GDP growth forecast was revised down slightly to 1.6%, the same growth level as seen in 2018. While some positive signals still support global economic growth at around the current forecast level, underlying risks continue, considering ongoing trade tensions, monetary policies and ongoing challenges in several emerging and developing economies.

World Oil Demand
In 2018, the estimate for world oil demand growth was revised lower by a slight 0.03 mb/d from last month’s report. This came as a result of slower than expected demand growth from OECD-Europe and Asia Pacific as well as from non-OECD Other Asia and the Middle East. Total world oil demand growth in 2018 is estimated at 1.47 mb/d, for an average of 98.78 mb/d for the year. For 2019, oil demand growth is forecast at around 1.24 mb/d, slightly lower than the previous month’s assessment by 0.05 mb/d to reach an average of 100.00 mb/d. The downward revision is mainly an outcome of lower economic expectations in 2019 for the OECD Americas and Europe, as well as Latin America and the Middle East.

World Oil Supply
Non-OPEC oil supply growth in 2018 was revised up by 0.11 mb/d from the previous month’s report, mainly due to adjustments for US, Canada, Malaysia, China and UK supply, and is now estimated at 2.72 mb/d, with total supply averaging 62.17 mb/d for the year. Key growth drivers in 2018 were the US with 2.24 mb/d, along with Canada, Russia, Kazakhstan, Qatar, Ghana and the UK, while Mexico, Norway and Vietnam showed the largest declines. The non-OPEC oil supply growth forecast for 2019 was also revised up by 0.08 mb/d to 2.18 mb/d, mainly due to a revised production forecast for the US Gulf of Mexico. Total non-OPEC supply for the year is projected to average 64.34 mb/d. The US, Brazil, Russia, the UK, Australia, Kazakhstan and Ghana are expected to be the main drivers, while Mexico, Canada, Norway, Indonesia and
Vietnam are projected to see the largest declines. OPEC NGLs and non-conventional liquids are estimated to have grown by 0.04 mb/d in 2018 to average 4.98 mb/d, and forecast to grow by 0.09 mb/d in 2019 to average 5.07 mb/d. In January 2019, OPEC crude oil production decreased by 797 tb/d to average 30.81 mb/d, according to secondary sources.

Product Markets and Refining Operations
Global product markets continued to lose ground in January for the second consecutive month. In the US, soaring gasoline stocks, along with poor fuel oil performance affected by lower FCC margins, offset support from strong heating oil demand. In Europe, product markets weakened across the barrel as arbitrage openings into the region pressured margins and outweighed support from a pick-up in diesel and fuel oil demand. In Asia, weakening naphtha and jet/kerosene markets dragged on margins, as a growing gasoline surplus reduced gasoline margins to a new multi-year low.

Tanker Market
Average dirty tanker spot freight rates declined by 28% in January, reversing the profits made in 4Q18. Lower rates were seen in all reported dirty classes, with the drop mainly attributed to thin market activity in general, while vessel supply remains in surplus. Clean tanker spot freight rates also fell due to the general downward trend seen in the tanker market in January. A lack of activity prevailed in the different classes, leading to a drop in average clean tanker spot freight rates by 18% from the month before.

Stock Movements
Preliminary data for December showed that total OECD commercial oil stocks fell by 10.8 mb m-o-m to stand at 2,851 mb. This was 2.5 mb lower than the same time a year ago, but 28 mb above the latest five-year average. Within the components, crude stocks indicated a surplus of around 50 mb, while product stocks are 22 mb below the latest five-year average. In terms of days of forward cover, OECD commercial stocks rose by 0.3 days m-o-m in December to stand at 59.5 days. This was 0.4 days below the same period in 2017 and 0.8 days below the latest five-year average.

Balance of Supply and Demand
Demand for OPEC crude in 2018 stood at 31.6 mb/d, 1.3 mb/d lower than the 2017 level. In 2019, demand for OPEC crude is forecast at 30.6 mb/d, around 1.0 mb/d lower than the 2018 level.
Source: OPEC

Source :

Posted By : Rabi Wangkhem on Fri, 15 Feb 2019
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