Since the first shipments from Cheniere’s Sabine Pass liquefaction plant last year, the impact of the rising flow of US LNG exports has been closely tracked by the market. The increase in exports of crude oil and NGLs produced from shale has drawn less attention, but it may have even more important consequences.
US crude exports exceeded 1 million barrels per day (MMb/d) in the first few weeks of 2017 as the country’s production recovered to 9 MMb/d – having dropped by more than 1 MMb/d from highs of 9.6 MMb/d reached last year. The recovery will offset production cuts of 1.2 MMb/d put in place by OPEC in January and looks likely to keep international oil prices from straying above $60 per barrel.
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