Market seen balancing with OPEC at target

Target-level production of crude oil by members of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries would balance the oil market in 2016, according to three key monitoring agencies.

In projections for the coming year by the International Energy Agency, OPEC, and US Energy Information Administration, total OPEC production of about 30 million b/d—the OPEC group target—plus other contributions to worldwide supply equals respective projections for global oil demand without inventory change.

Recently, total crude production by OPEC members has exceeded the target level by more than 1 million b/d and supply from other sources has continued to increase, causing inventories to build at unusually high rates and depressing crude prices.

For 2016, all three agencies project increases in global oil demand. IEA has the highest demand outlook at an average 95.2 million b/d for the year, and OPEC has the lowest at 93.94 million b/d. EIA’s demand forecast is 95.03 million b/d.

OPEC and EIA both expect much slower growth in non-OPEC oil supply next year than has occurred recently: 300,000 b/d to 57.69 million b/d for OPEC and 180,000 b/d to 58.55 million b/d for EIA. IEA projects no change in non-OPEC supply from this year’s expected level of 58 million b/d.

At zero stock change, the market projections for 2016 balance with OPEC crude production at 30.3 million b/d for IEA, 30.07 million b/d for OPEC, and 29.91 million b/d for EIA.

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