Opec cut throws wrench into record oil short-selling streak

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The Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) held its meeting in Vienna on Thursday to agree on a production cut aimed at curbing price declines.

FILE - Candles, lit by activists, protesting the killing of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi, are placed outside Saudi Arabia's consulate, in Istanbul, during a candlelight vigil, October 25, 2018.

"It seems EIA has a habit of sending bad news to OPEC during its Vienna meetings".

"U.S. political pressure is clearly a dominant factor at this OPEC meeting, limiting the scope of Saudi actions to rebalance the market", said Gary Ross, chief executive of Black Gold Investors and a veteran OPEC watcher.

"Libya, Iran, Nigeria and Venezuela, for instance, have argued for special exemptions from the cuts", per Wall Street Journal.

Trump was claiming to cut Iranian oil exports to zero and his best buddy bin Salman was Trump's main chess piece to succeed in his game against Iran. It was reported that the OPEC deal+ was under threat because of the reluctance of Russian Federation to cut oil production.

Mazrouei, who is also the United Arab Emirates' minister of energy and industry, said the agreement had been a success and shown "positive progress on removing the inventory overhang".

Now every day the world produces about 1.8 million barrels.

Putin successfully seized the moment to defeat his powerful rival Trump and pulled the prince into his corner, assuring his all-out support for him to defeat Trump and announce the Kingdom's decision on output cuts in the 175th OPEC gathering in Vienna.

That has created a dilemma for Saudi-led OPEC, which wants to maintain higher prices but avoid ceding more market share to shale producers.

He added: "The fact that the OPEC-Russia alliance is still holding matters as much as the details of the deal itself".

The price of crude has fallen nearly a third since October to around $60 a barrel as Saudi Arabia, Russia and the United Arab Emirates raised output to offset lower exports from Iran, OPEC's third-largest producer.

Saudi Arabia, OPEC's most powerful member, appeared to weigh the Trump administration's calls to keep oil prices down against Russia's calls for bigger production cuts. After the entry into force of the restrictions on OPEC countries will account for 800 thousand barrels, while the remaining 400 barrels will be produced for countries that are not included in the cartel.

While Saudi Arabia is still the largest oil producer inside OPEC, its influence over the global oil market has shrunk as the United States and Russian Federation are pumping oil at record levels.

One stumbling block to an agreement had been Iran, Saudi Arabia's regional rival and fellow OPEC member, which had been arguing for an exemption to any cuts because its crude exports are already being pinched already by USA sanctions.

Though al-Falih insisted that "we don't need permission from anyone to cut" production, the figure of a million barrels put forward by Saudi Arabia was lower than the reduction expected by the markets.

Over a crucial week of negotiations, the USA loomed large. Fast-forward two months, and oil had fallen precipitously, well below the $70s, and the granting of waivers was insufficient to explain the drop.

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