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Iraq Sends Millions of Barrels of Oil to US While Saudis Cut


Oil prices fell on Wednesday after industry data showed a build in us crude stocks and OPEC reported a rise in its production despite a pledge to cut output.

Despite expectations of a drop in US crude stockpiles, fears of rising USA shale production are expected to continue to weigh on OPEC and its allies' efforts to rebalance supply and demand in the market.

"I'm only looking at the first week of June, and on the face of it there's not much change", said Roy Mason of Oil Movements, a UK-based firm that estimates supply by tracking tanker shipments.

Data from the U.S. Energy Information Administration showed that domestic-crude supplies fell by 1.7 million barrels for the week ended June 9.

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The bulk of the upward adjustment in non-OPEC oil supply since December "has come from the US", OPEC said.

US stocks were little changed on Wednesday after the Federal Reserve made a widely expected move to raise interest rates for the second time in three months.

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July gasoline RBN7, -4.11% was down 4.2% at $1.437 a gallon on the New York Mercantile Exchange, while July West Texas Intermediate crude CLN7, -3.64% lost 3.8% to $44.70 a barrel. The IEA said stocks were 292 million barrels above the five-year average.

Oil inventories across the world's most industrial nations rose in April by 18.6 million barrels to 3.045 billion barrels, thanks to higher refinery output and imports.

"This is very unusual for this time of the year, when gasoline demand is supposed to pick up", said Carsten Fritsch, oil analyst at Commerzbank AG in Frankfurt, Germany.

Crude oil prices were slightly higher after Nigeria reported a pipeline leak.

If OPEC stands pat, putting hope over past experience, then the price of crude (which is down 13 percent since late May) could drop further, perhaps much further. Yet the group lowered expectations for non-member Russian Federation, which has been cooperating with Saudi Arabia on production, by 200,000 bpd, or about two-thirds of the original estimate.

It did not provide a forecast for OPEC output next year, but calculated that it rose to 32.08 million bpd in May, taking the overall global supply to 96.69 million bpd last month. "There is too much oil from the US, too much oil from Libya, too much oil from Nigeria", said Fereidun Fesharaki, founder and chairman of consulting group FGE, which focuses on oil and gas markets east of the Suez and in Europe and the U.S, reports CNBC.

The EIA released its monthly report on drilling activity Monday showing that oil production from seven major US shale plays is projected to rise by 127,000 barrels a day to 5.475 million barrels a day in July from June.

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