Wednesday, March 15, 2017

That Didn't Last Long -- Even Saudi Arabia Has Decided After Two Months To Throw In The Towel -- March 15, 2017

From Bloomberg: Saudis tell OPEC they "eased" cuts to pump 10 million bbls.

Crazy headline; easier to understand: "Saudis increased production in February." These are the data points:
  • Saudi Arabia raised output back above 10 million bopd in February, the second month into six months of cuts
  • the action reverses about a third of the cuts it made the previous month
  • production was boosted 263,300 bopd back to 10.011 million bopd
  • KSA energy minister says that, nonetheless, the volume of crude oil supplied to markets fell by 90,000 bopd to 9.9 million as extra supplies were moved into storage
  • even after the increase, Saudi Arabia's data show the kingdom is cutting output more than required under the terms of the OPEC agreement set at the November 30, 2016, meeting
  • crude in New York fells as much as 2.7% to $47.09 / bbl after the report
  • Saudi's ceiling per the OPEC cut: 10.058 million bbls (February production: 10.011 million bbls) delta = 47,000 bbls (a number so low vs global production as to be completely meaningless)
  • external sources suggest Saudi's output fell by 68,100 bopd to 9.797 million bopd (again, quibbling over numbers so small as to be ludicrous)
  • when one includes output increases from Iran, Nigeria, and Libya -- permitted under the agreement -- OPEC's total production remains about 200,000 bopd above the target set
So, Iran, Nigeria, and Libya are 200,000 bopd above the limit, and now KSA adds another 263,300 bopd, KSA's increase was greater than that of three other countries combined.

Something tells me that there is no love lost between KSA and Iran over this whole charade.

Back of the envelope:
  • 10.011 million x 47 = 470.517
  • 9.747700 million x 51 = 497.133
I think KSA needs to hire some Disney MBAs or Apple MBAs to work on "price points." Clearly, whatever KSA is doing, it's not working. 

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