OPEC Output Hits 2018 High Amid Concern Over Slowing China Demand

OPEC Output Hits 2018 High Amid Concern Over Slowing China Demand

USA drillers added oil rigs for the first time in three weeks, increasing the rig count by 2 to 862.

USA oil prices headed higher on Tuesday after two oil platforms on the Gulf of Mexico were evacuated in advance of an expected hurricane.

But Trump's attack on cheap Chinese imports, and his decision to impose trade tariffs on a wide range of Chinese goods entering the US, could damage China's economic growth and in turn lower its demand for oil.

The same day, Nigeria Oil Minister Emmanuel Ibe Kachikwu sought to reassure, saying Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, along with Nigeria and Angola, can bring enough oil to the market to help meet shortfalls from Iran.

Looking at the latest news, Anadarko Petroleum Corp said that it shut down two oil platforms in the northern Gulf of Mexico thanks to weather conditions.

In a speech on June 4, the Leader slammed European governments for expecting the Iranian nation to both tolerate sanctions and give up its nuclear activities, saying that the country can not remain in "nuclear custody" when the sanctions are still in place.

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Global oil markets have tightened over the last month, pushing up Brent prices by more than 10 percent since the middle of August.

"The prospects of increased supplies from OPEC and her allies, and weaker demand from China and other emerging markets could weigh further on oil prices going forward, or at least limit the upside potential", said Fawad Razaqzada, market analyst at futures brokerage Forex.

India is allowing state refiners to import Iranian oil on a cost, insurance and freight basis, switching to Iranian vessels after most Western insurers dropped Iran. The high rig count has helped lift USA crude production C-OUT-T-EIA by more than 30 percent since mid-2016 to 11 million bpd. For 2020, it said it expected Brent to average $75 a barrel, up from its previous forecast of $55.

The US said it will persuade countries which now buy Iranian oil to cut imports by as much as 1 million barrels a day when the sanctions take effect in early November.

French bank BNP Paribas struck a similar tone, warning of "supply issues" for the rest of the year and into 2019.

The US' unilateral exit from the 2015 nuclear deal with Iran earlier this year and re-imposition of sanctions targeting its oil industry in November have added to the rial's volatility.

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