The International Energy Agency raised Thursday its estimate for global oil demand growth this year to 1.5 million b/d and forecast supply would undershoot demand from the second quarter, assuming flat OPEC production.
* January sees OECD stock build
* Strong OECD growth drives demand
* ‘Call’ on OPEC raised by 100,000 b/d
In its monthly oil market report, the IEA said oil stocks in the OECD developed countries had risen in January, the first month-on-month increase since last July, and forecast a “very small” build in global stocks in the current quarter. But it said the January increase, at 18 million barrels, was half the average for the the month over the past five years, and OECD stocks were still falling against the five-year average. The IEA revised upward its demand growth estimate for 2018, from 1.4 million b/d in last month’s report, mainly on stronger than previously expected growth in the OECD, particularly Europe, including Turkey, but also the US and Japan. It said recent signs of “protectionism” in the US were a risk to demand, but growth in world trade had been particularly strong. Meanwhile it said world oil supply had fallen in February to 97.94 million b/d, from 98.02 million b/d in January.
OPEC crude output had dropped by 70,000 b/d to 32.10 million b/d in February, it estimated. Lower OPEC output was offset by an increase in US liquids production of 210,000 b/d between January and February, with the US total reaching 14.15 million b/d.