Weekly US crude oil production
According to the EIA, US crude oil production increased by 258,000 bpd (barrels per day) to 9,750,000 bpd on January 5–12, 2018. Production increased 2.7% week-over-week and by 806,000 bpd or 9% year-over-year.
The EIA released US oil production data on January 18, 2018. News of a recovery in production pressured oil (USO) (DWT) prices on the same day. Lower oil prices have a negative impact on funds like the Energy Select Sector SPDR Fund (XLE), which fell 0.82% to 76.5 on January 18, 2018.
US crude oil production recovery
US oil production has risen by 1,322,000 bpd or 15.6% since July 1, 2016. Higher oil (UWT) prices and an increase in capital spending by oil producers (XOP) (FXN) in 2017 supported the increase in US crude oil production. Higher oil (DBO) prices benefit energy producers like Occidental Petroleum (OXY), Callon Petroleum (CPE), Chevron (CVX), and Denbury Resources (DNR).
Estimates for 2018
US crude oil production averaged 8,860,000 bpd in 2016 and 9,300,000 bpd in 2017. US oil production could average ~10,270,000 bpd in 2018, according to the EIA. It would be the highest annual production average ever.
OPEC published its monthly oil market report on January 18, 2018. It estimates that US oil production would rise by 820,000 bpd in 2018. It was 110,000 bpd higher than the previous month’s estimates. The increase in conventional crude oil production could lead to a rise in overall US production.
Production cuts and US oil production
US oil production is expected to increase 16% or by 1,410,000 bpd between January 2017 and December 2018. If US production rises at this speed, it could offset 75% of the ongoing production cuts by major oil producers.
The increase in US oil production could be the biggest bearish driver for oil prices in 2018. OPEC estimates that non-OPEC supply would increase by 1,150,000 bpd in 2018. It could also pressure oil (DBO) prices.
Next, we’ll discuss another bearish driver for crude oil in 2018.