Record Breaking U.S. Exports Could Hurt Oil Markets

12 Jun 2017   exports, Prices, Shale Oil

U.S. exports have spiked in recent weeks, upending longstanding trade flows. But while that may be good news for some U.S. drillers, the unusually high level of crude exports are not obviously a good sign about the health of the oil market. At the same time, it is not guaranteed that U.S. producers will be able to continue to ship oil abroad at such a high rate for very long. U.S. oil producers were prohibited from exporting crude oil for decades until Congress scrapped the ban at the end of 2015. For much of last year, exports only rose slightly. But that changed in 2017 – U.S. crude oil exports topped 1 million barrels per day (mb/d) several times in recent weeks, double the rate from a year earlier. (Click to enlarge) The exports provide an outlet for shale drillers but they also put pressure on the global oil […]

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