Sorry to break into the stream of never-ending Trump news, but there is other news driving the markets now.
Yesterday, January 30, oil prices fell as another increase in the number of oil rigs at work in the U.S. met skepticism about OPEC’s ability/willingness to meet its full goal for cutting production.
On Friday of last week Baker Hughes reported that the number of oil rigs drilling in the U.S. had climbed to the highest level since November 2015.
At the same time data from Petro-logistics, Reuters reports, show that while OPEC members have cut production by some 900,000 barrels of oil a day, projections show that OPEC and non-OPEC members that were party to the deal are on track to cut only about 75% of the 1.8 million barrels a day promised in the agreement.
With U.S.drilling activity on the upswing, there’s not a lot of give in those OPEC production targets.
Wall Street oil analysts right now see $60 a barrel as the likely top for oil in 2018. J.P. Morgan, for example, has told clients that getting oil above $60 a barrel would require another round of increased production cuts in the last half of 2017, and that those cuts are unlikely.
In the nearer term, analysts are pegging oil prices to stay above $50 a barrel as OPEC and non-OPEC countries implement their agreed production cuts, but that an increase much above $50 a barrel would be surprising.
As of noon today, January 31, in New York West Texas Crude was up 1.25% to $53.21 a barrel and the international benchmark Brent crude was up 1.1% to $55.84.