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Russia’s Crude Oil Production Is near April 2017 Highs

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Russia’s crude oil production

Russia’s crude oil production rose 0.2% to 10.97 MMbpd (million barrels per day) in March 2018—compared to the previous month. Russia’s crude oil production is near the highest level since April 2017.

Russia’s crude oil production increased despite ongoing supply cuts. Russia’s Ministry of Energy released the production data on April 2, 2018. The news of a rise in oil production pressured oil prices. WTI and Brent oil prices fell 3% and 2.5%, respectively, on April 2, 2018.

The Energy Select Sector SPDR ETF (XLE) and the SPDR S&P Oil & Gas Exploration & Production ETF (XOP) fell ~2% and ~3.4%, respectively, on April 2, 2018. XLE follows the Energy Select Sector Index, while XOP follows the S&P Oil & Gas Exploration & Production Select Industry Index.

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Russia’s crude oil exports through pipelines

Russia’s crude oil exports through pipelines rose by 1,000 bpd (barrels per day) to 4.16 MMbpd (million barrels per day) in March 2018—compared to the previous month. Any increase in exports is bearish for crude oil prices. 

Russia and production cuts 

Russia and OPEC agreed to extend ongoing supply cuts until December 2018. Russia pledged to cut its production by 300,000 bpd as part of the supply cut deal. Russia cut the crude oil production by ~280,220 bpd in March 2018 from the level in October 2016. Russia had a lower compliance with production cuts in March 2018.

Brent and WTI oil prices have risen ~50% and ~48% since June 21, 2017, partly due to the supply cuts. The iShares Global Energy ETF (IXC) and the Vanguard Energy ETF (VDE) increased ~11% and 7%, respectively, during the same period. IXC tracks an index of global equities in the energy sector, while VDE tracks an index of energy stocks.

Impact

Russia’s oil production has increased ~80% from 6.1 MMbpd in 1999. An additional increase in Russia’s crude oil production is bearish for crude oil prices.

If Russia has a higher compliance with the supply cuts, it could support oil prices. However, an early exit or a lower compliance with the supply cuts could pressure oil prices.

Next, we’ll discuss US crude oil production.

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