This account is pending registration confirmation. Please click on the link within the confirmation email previously sent you to complete registration.
Need a new registration confirmation email? Click here
TheStreet Open House

Platts: OPEC Pumps 30.65 Million Barrels Of Crude Oil Per Day In December

LONDON, Jan. 14, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- Crude oil production from the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) fell to 30.65 million barrels per day (b/d) in December from 31.08 million b/d in November, led by a plunge in exports from both Saudi Arabia and Iraq, a just-released Platts survey of OPEC and oil industry officials and analysts showed.

The 430,000 b/d month-over-month drop takes the oil producer group closer to its 30 million b/d output target, which has now been in place for more than a year, having been extended at OPEC's December 12 ministerial conference in Vienna.

"Global supply has been running above demand for many months, so the Saudis appear to have decided to simply take away a good chunk of that surplus all in one shot," said John Kingston, Platts global director of news. "It's a wake-up call to let an increasingly glutted market know that the kingdom is not going to let the imbalance get too out of hand."

OPEC kingpin Saudi Arabia accounted for the biggest single reduction last month, estimated at some 370,000 b/d. An industry source familiar with Saudi policy said the lower December volume reflected weaker demand from customers and lower demand from the domestic power generation sector with the onset of cooler weather.

Saudi Arabian production is viewed as a barometer of market conditions since the country, due to its significant spare output capacity, is the only producer able to act as unofficial swing producer.

Iraqi output fell to 2.98 million b/d in December from 3.23 million b/d in November, a drop of some 250,000 b/d.

A spate of rough weather in the Persian Gulf hit Iraq's southern exports, affecting tanker loadings and throttling back production because of limited available storage capacity.

In the north, supply of Kurdistan-produced crude into the export system, which had peaked at 190,000 b/d earlier last year, dwindled to almost zero during December as a row over overdue payments to contractors escalated.

On December 26, a senior official at Iraq's state-run North Oil Company, which operates the Iraq- Turkey export pipeline, said export volumes from the KRG area were flowing at just 4,000 b/d.

Iran maintained an output level near November's 2.7 million b/d, but that level represents a drop of more than 800,000 b/d since the beginning of 2012. Market observers believe the current year could see a further dip as Iran's top customers in Asia, which have already reduced imports of Iranian crude in order to obtain exemptions from U.S. financial sanctions which came into force in late June, make further reductions in line with a second set of 180-day exemptions granted in late 2012.

Furthermore, an additional U.S. measure will tighten the sanctions grip on Tehran in early February, when an exempted country will be able to continue to buy Iranian oil and avoid sanctions only if it makes its oil payment into an account at a bank within its borders.

Iranian oil minister Rostam Ghasemi last week told parliament in a report to the planning and budget committee that Iran's crude sales had declined by 40% and its remittances by 45% since the start of the current Iranian year in mid-March.

Quoted by students' news agency ISNA, committee rapporteur Gholamreza Khateb said oil exports were expected to average 1.5 million b/d in the next Iranian year which begins March 21.

Members of Iran's parliament have said in recent weeks that Iran may base its budget for the next Iranian year on a crude export volume of one million b/d. Iran exported an average 2.2 million b/d in 2011.

In terms of Nigeria, crude oil volumes swung back upward in December as ExxonMobil lifted a force majeure imposed in November on loadings of Qua Iboe crude following a rupture on an offshore pipeline.

For production numbers by country, click  here. You may be prompted for a cost-free one-time-only log-in registration. An OPEC guide may be found at this link

Platts OPEC and oil experts are available for media interviews; please consult  Platts Media Center to schedule an interview. For other  oil, energy and related information, visit  www.platts.com.

About Platts: Founded in 1909,  Platts is a leading global provider of energy, petrochemicals and metals information and a premier source of benchmark prices for the physical and futures markets.  Platts' news, pricing, analytics, commentary and  conferences help customers make better-informed trading and business decisions and help the markets operate with greater transparency and efficiency.  Customers in more than 150 countries benefit from Platts' coverage of the  carbon emissionscoalelectricityoil,  natural gasmetalsnuclear powerpetrochemical, and  shipping markets.  A division of The McGraw-Hill Companies (NYSE: MHP), Platts is headquartered in New York with approximately 900 employees in 15 offices worldwide. Additional information is available at  http://www.platts.com .

About The McGraw-Hill Companies: The McGraw-Hill Companies (NYSE: MHP), a financial intelligence and education company, signed an agreement to sell its McGraw-Hill Education business to investment funds affiliated with Apollo Global Management, LLC in November 2012. Following the sale closing, expected in early 2013, the Company will be renamed McGraw Hill Financial (subject to shareholder approval) and will be a powerhouse in benchmarks, content and analytics for the global capital and commodity markets. The Company's leading brands will include: Standard & Poor's, S&P Capital IQ, S&P Dow Jones Indices, Platts, Crisil, J.D. Power and Associates, McGraw-Hill Construction and Aviation Week. The Company will have approximately 17,000 employees in more than 30 countries.  Additional information is available at www.mcgraw-hill.com.

CONTACT Kathleen Tanzy212-904-2860 Kathleen_tanzy@platts.com

SOURCE Platts

Copyright 2011 PR Newswire. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Select the service that is right for you!

COMPARE ALL SERVICES
Action Alerts PLUS
Try it NOW

Jim Cramer and Stephanie Link actively manage a real portfolio and reveal their money management tactics while giving advanced notice before every trade.

Product Features:
  • $2.5+ million portfolio
  • Large-cap and dividend focus
  • Intraday trade alerts from Cramer
  • Weekly roundups
TheStreet Quant Ratings
Try it NOW
Only $49.95/yr

Access the tool that DOMINATES the Russell 2000 and the S&P 500.

Product Features:
  • Buy, hold, or sell recommendations for over 4,300 stocks
  • Unlimited research reports on your favorite stocks
  • A custom stock screener
  • Upgrade/downgrade alerts
Stocks Under $10
Try it NOW

David Peltier, uncovers low dollar stocks with extraordinary upside potential that are flying under Wall Street's radar.

Product Features:
  • Model portfolio
  • Stocks trading below $10
  • Intraday trade alerts
  • Weekly roundups
Dividend Stock Advisor
Try it NOW

Jim Cramer's protege, David Peltier, identifies the best of breed dividend stocks that will pay a reliable AND significant income stream.

Product Features:
  • Diversified model portfolio of dividend stocks
  • Alerts when market news affect the portfolio
  • Bi-weekly updates with exact steps to take - BUY, HOLD, SELL
Real Money Pro
Try it NOW

All of Real Money, plus 15 more of Wall Street's sharpest minds delivering actionable trading ideas, a comprehensive look at the market, and fundamental and technical analysis.

Product Features:
  • Real Money + Doug Kass Plus 15 more Wall Street Pros
  • Intraday commentary & news
  • Ultra-actionable trading ideas
Options Profits
Try it NOW

Our options trading pros provide daily market commentary and over 100 monthly option trading ideas and strategies to help you become a well-seasoned trader.

Product Features:
  • 100+ monthly options trading ideas
  • Actionable options commentary & news
  • Real-time trading community
  • Options TV
To begin commenting right away, you can log in below using your Disqus, Facebook, Twitter, OpenID or Yahoo login credentials. Alternatively, you can post a comment as a "guest" just by entering an email address. Your use of the commenting tool is subject to multiple terms of service/use and privacy policies - see here for more details.
Submit an article to us!
DOW 17,045.43 -25.79 -0.15%
S&P 500 1,976.27 -1.53 -0.08%
NASDAQ 4,502.9370 -2.9150 -0.06%

Brokerage Partners

Rates from Bankrate.com

  • Mortgage
  • Credit Cards
  • Auto

Free Newsletters from TheStreet

My Subscriptions:

After the Bell

Before the Bell

Booyah! Newsletter

Midday Bell

TheStreet Top 10 Stories

Winners & Losers

Register for Newsletters
Top Rated Stocks Top Rated Funds Top Rated ETFs