Oil prices have trembled in the last 24 hours leading up to the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries next meeting on Friday.
Industry players from U.S. shale companies large and small to national oil companies in Venezuela and Russia are positioning themselves for the market’s reaction to the cartel’s expected decision to maintain production levels. Equipment manufacturers to credit and bond evaluators are holding their breath for any slight change in the cartel’s unilateral strategy—anything that might let the glutted market breathe a small sigh of relief and recovery.
For all the latest details—and what’s really at stake—read these five stories before the meeting concludes.
1. “U.S. crude futures closed down $1.64, or 2.75 percent, at $58.00 a barrel—a one-week low. Brent for July was down $1.80, or 2.8 percent, at $62.80 a barrel.” (CNBC)
2. “The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries, meeting in Vienna, is expected to affirm on Friday an output target of 30 million barrels per day, ignoring calls from some producers to cut supply and support prices. OPEC actually produces about 2 milllion bpd above the target.” (Reuters)
3. “In its fight for market share, the Saudis have said that it isn’t against anyone and that it supports market stability and the balance between supply and demand.” (MarketWatch)
4. “Iraqi production is expected to keep rising this year, and U.S. output hit a record high last week in weekly data going back to 1983. If ongoing negotiations with Iran lead to a lifting of sanctions, Iranian crude could also reenter the market this year.” (The Wall Street Journal)
5. “Iran, an OPEC member, could soon accelerate its oil production if Tehran finalizes a deal over its nuclear program with U.S. and European leaders by June 30. Years of sanctions drove Iran’s oil exports down to as little as 1 million barrels a day.” (International Business Times)