The International Energy Agency (IEA) acknowledged in its latest Oil Market Report that the recent rally in oil prices came on the heels of significant tightening, but that the supply picture still looks ominous. The rally in Brent prices to $70 was driven in part by some unexpected interruption and geopolitical tension, including the possible unraveling of the Iran nuclear deal, the closure of the Forties pipeline a few weeks back, disruption in Libya, and the steep decline in Venezuela’s oil production. Inventories also continue to decline (for the time being), and even picked up pace at the end of last year. The IEA said that OECD commercial stocks declined by 17.9 million barrels in November, a pace that was twice as fast as the five-year average. And, in December, preliminary data suggests the declines were even stronger. In fact, inventories declined in three consecutive quarters in 2017. On […]