OPEC data was mixed this week reminding us of two important themes - 1, OPEC members are pushing the limits of the current output agreement and 2- recent gains in Libya and Nigeria could be hard to maintain.
On the first item, preliminary estimates see July OPEC production +145k bpd m/m which would represent a new YTD high in the cartel’s output and sow additional doubts about their ability to coordinate supply cuts.
Meanwhile Iraq is publicly promoting its plan to ramp production up to 5m bpd by year-end (from 4.4m bpd in June) and Ecuador stated that they will no longer participate in cuts in an effort to strengthen their finances.
As for the second item, Nigeria’s production and export woes were headline news this week due to pipeline vandalism. All-knowing prompt brent spreads digested the week’s news flow and moved slightly higher. Brent rallied to -55 cents on Friday forecasting a reasonably strong supply/demand balance in coming month.Oilprice.com was the "original" peak oil site.