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Oil Market Snapshot – March 2016

  • Brent has continued to rally in March, buoyed by a weaker dollar and a firm date for meetings between Russia and OPEC
  • Inventories continue to build, however, limiting the rally to $40.80/bbl on 23rd March
  • Our average 2016 Brent price forecast has been revised higher to $38.38/bbl (+$1.68 on last forecast) recovering to c. $45/bbl by year-end
  • Our global demand forecast is unchanged, awaiting the US Fed’s short term demand report next month
  • China appears to have halted filling its SPR while more capacity is built, but delays to this suggest softer Chinese oil demand in 2016
  • We expect 2016 production declines across non-OPEC countries as new projects will be unable to overcome natural decline rates from the North Sea to North Dakota
  • Brazil’s continuing corruption scandal and associated political turmoil is hampering Petrobras -Sete Brasil negotiations over the future of their floater newbuilds
  • OPEC has held production firm m-o-m, but we expect a decline in production for March following supply disruptions in Iraq, Nigeria and UAE

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