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IEA: Despite High Prices, Oil Market Report Sees a Turning of the Tide

The April Oil Market Report (OMR) detects a turning of the tide for market fundamentals, with an implied 1Q12 global stock build of 1.2 mb/d. Gains in OPEC production to 31.4 mb/d in March have seen global oil supply move ahead of oil demand for the first time since early 2009. However, despite a recent easing, oil prices remain high, reflected in a now-higher price assumption for 2012 overall. Uncertainty over summer supplies, and the potential loss of around 1 mb/d of Iranian crude due to sanctions, continue to provide price support. A higher baseline 1Q12 demand estimate nonetheless holds expected 2012 oil demand growth unchanged at 0.8 mb/d. Unplanned stoppages curbed 1Q12 non-OPEC supply by around 1.1 mb/d, but gradual recovery is expected for the rest of the year, resulting in y-o-y growth of 0.7 mb/d. OECD industry stocks built by 550 kb/d in 1Q12 and stand at a preliminary 2 653 mb at end-March. 2Q12 refinery runs are likely to hit a seasonal low of 74.4 mb/d, although rising US throughputs and new non-OECD refining capacity cushion the drop.

The Oil Market Report (OMR) is a monthly International Energy Agency (IEA) publication which provides a view of the state of the international oil market and projections for oil supply and demand 12-18 months ahead.

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