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US Crude Oil Inventories Have Fallen ~10.6% in 2017

01 January 2018

North Dakota's booming oil business has quickly ran up against a serious shortage of housing for the thousands of workers who have poured into the state looking to cash in on the Bakken oil formation that has made North Dakota the second-largest oil-producing state after Texas.

Brent broke through $67 earlier this week for the first time since May 2015.

Oil's trading at the highest level since mid-2015 after WTI breached above $60 a barrel for the first time in more than two years.

While some producers have no choice but to take whatever price the market has set for their products, others have found various ways of becoming less beholden to the price fluctuations of a single grade of crude oil.

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USA production is expected to rise to 9.2 million barrels per day (bpd) in 2017 and a record 10.0 million bpd in 2018 from 8.9 million bpd in 2016, according to federal energy projections this week.

Oil's revival from the biggest crash in a generation persisted, with prices set for a second annual gain after weathering everything from hurricanes and Middle East conflict to the tussle between OPEC and US shale.

February WTI crude oil futures (DWT)(SCO) contracts rose 0.8% to $60.3 per barrel at 12:45 AM EST on December 29, 2017-the highest level since June 2015. Inventories declined 1% week-over-week and 54.2 MMbbls or 11.15% year-over-year. The US expects production to top 10 million barrels a day in the coming year.

In worldwide markets, China has issued crude oil import quotas totaling 121.32 million tons for 44 companies in its first batch of allowances for 2018. The cuts started last January and are scheduled to cover all of 2018. Output peaked at 9.6 million bpd in 1970. While gains were driven by glut-shrinking output cuts by the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries and its allies including Russian Federation, geopolitical tensions in the Middle East as well as pipeline disruptions from the North Sea to Canada and Libya have also helped.

US Crude Oil Inventories Have Fallen ~10.6% in 2017