Oil: the barrel fluctuates over $50

Demostenes Florosabo.net

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According to the latest data, global oil supply has decreased 6.6 mbd in December, while in 2017, the estimate is that supply from non-OPEC countries will increase by 385,000 b/d. These are some indications, but the real different maker on oil prices could once again be the spike in US output

Brent Crude North Sea opened at $55.64/b and closed at $55.48/b, while West Texas Intermediate opened at $52.48/b and closed at $53.32/b. In January, oil prices were steady over $50/b due to the full respect of the supply reduction programme by OPEC and non-OPEC countries in addition to the depreciation of the dollar over the major world currencies (euro, yen, rubble and pound).

Both qualities reached their minimum on January 10th respectivelly, pricing $53.62/b and $50.75/b because the hedge funds, after having amassed net-long speculative positions equivalent to 796 million barrels in the last week of December, started to cash their revenues. Even so, finance has not sparked a downturn in prices during the second half of the month as Ole Hansen, head of commodity strategy at Saxo Bank, feared.