FTSE flounders, pound falls on trade and Brexit fears

FTSE flounders, pound falls on trade and Brexit fears

Due to the staunch opposition to any production increase from the faction led by Iran and Venezuela, analysts expect this week's OPEC meeting to be a very hard one, comparing it to the 2011 meeting, which the then Saudi Oil Minister Ali al-Naimi described as "the worst OPEC meeting of all time", Commerzbank commodities analyst Carsten Fritsch told Reuters.

USA sanctions will contribute to Iran and Venezuela potentially losing nearly 30 percent of their oil output next year, requiring extra supplies from the group's Gulf members, the International Energy Agency said last week.

"We believe that OPEC will act like a central bank going forward, raising and lowering production as necessary with an objective of keeping global oil inventories at normal, 5-year levels", Thummel said.

The Opec kingpin Saudi Arabia and Russian Federation indicated on Friday they would loosen their supply restraint and were starting to raise exports. Brent oil is up from $46 a barrel in June 2017 to $73 a barrel last Friday and West Texas Intermediate from $45 a year ago to $64 at the end of last week.

EIA projects that USA crude oil production will average 10.8 million barrels per day for full-year 2018, up from 9.4 million barrels per day (bpd) in 2017, and will average 11.8 million bpd in 2019.

"But to that extent, the development coming ahead of the Opec meeting adds to the nervousness in the oil markets", he said.

Last week, Cushing inventories fell by 1.3 million barrels, government data showed on Wednesday.

Continuing "security" issues in Iraq, Nigeria and Libya and underinvestment by Mexico and Angola have impacted their output. A softer refining margin environment has also helped this time around, as it keeps product prices lower.

Iran national team staffer taken to hospital after goal against Spain disallowed
Spain may be the favorite, but there's no reason Iran can't pull off an upset if they're able to disrupt the Spanish offense. If you can't watch the game live, fuboTV provides access to all of the games for up to 72 hours after the original airing.

On Wednesday, the International Energy Agency (IEA) said in a report that the rapidly rising growth of oil prices would likely ease soon.

Two OPEC sources told Reuters that even Saudi Arabia's Gulf allies Kuwait and Oman were against big, immediate increases in output.

Crude oil demand now outstrips supply, and Opec members will debate whether to lift the 18-month-old production cap to stabilize prices.

Venezuela's state oil company Petroleos de Venezuela has seen its operations mired by problems ranging from fast-declining crude production and poor refining due to a lack of equipment, to obstacles for exporting oil amid port congestion and financial sanctions.

Moreover, trade tensions between China and the United States increased as the former said it would levy tariffs on some USA goods, including crude and gasoline, as a retaliation to President Donald Trump's $50 billion levy on Chinese imports.

For Opec, the next move will be to consider to return to a compliance ratio of 100 per cent of the agreed production cuts of 1.8 million barrels per day in 2016.

'Opec typically put aside political rivalries and agree on economic ones, but there is no disputing the current differences, which will make this meeting much more controversial and uncertain, ' said Rebecca O'Keeffe, head of investment at Interactive Investor.

Despite potential downward pressure from large producers increasing output, Goldman Sachs maintained its bullish outlook.

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