Oil prices rise as focus returns to supply concerns

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IRAN faces a potentially crushing loss of oil exports when USA sanctions return in November, but the impact could be blunted by its experience of working around embargoes. In addition to this, the supply issues increased due to data revealing that US crude production plunged by 100k bpd (barrels per day) to 10.9 million bpd during the previous week.

Thursday's report underscores how oil continues to be the world's dominant source of energy despite the growth of renewable energy and concern over oil's role in climate change.

Iran's oil exports are down by nearly a third since President Donald Trump said in April that the U.S. would withdraw from the nations' nuclear deal and reimpose sanctions.

Oil cartel OPEC has "not much credit" left as some members are turning it into "a tool for the US", a senior Iranian official said in comments published Saturday.

She said: "The hurricane story is transitory but the oil market us particularly sensitive to such events as we have a pretty tight supply situation looming".

The national flags of Russian Federation and Saudi Arabia are seen during a meeting of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) and non-OPEC producing countries in Vienna, Austria, May 25, 2017.

In the short-term, experts suggest supply will be a problem. Libya's exports remain unreliable after several years of internal conflict, and Angola is showing signs of structural decline.

Early in the week, traders were reacting to worries about tighter supply conditions once Washington's sanctions against Iran's crude oil exports kick in beginning in November, and stable us production due to a flattening of the rig count last week.

Reuters reported that India's oil ministry informed companies to prepare for a drastic reduction of oil imports from Iran come November, possibly reducing imports from the country down to zero.

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"I think we're kind of back there and we should be concerned about it", Halff said.

India was Iran's fifth major export destination in the five months, during which Iran mainly exported urea, methanol and liquefied propane to India.

Oil on Friday clawed back some of its losses from the previous session when prices fell the most in a month, although worries that emerging market crises and trade disputes could dent demand continued to drag.

Capped by demand concerns, prices are unlikely to rally above $80 a barrel for Brent, he said.

In theory Saudi Arabia could immediately raise output to 11.5 million barrels a day-that's what Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman told Bloomberg in April 2016.

"Is it as significant as it was a year ago? No". That means demand might not hold up as well in the face of $100 oil, and a drop in consumption would typically put downward pressure on oil prices.

US production this year is expected to grow 1.31 million bpd to 10.66 million bpd, unchanged from EIA's previous forecast.

"When you look at the availability of drillable locations in the Permian and the U.S.in general - discovered but unsanctioned projects - there's a lot of oil out there", Cohen said.

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