U.S. Energy Information Administration - EIA - Independent Statistics and Analysis
Analysis & Projections
The Availability and Price of Petroleum and Petroleum Products Produced in Countries Other Than Iran
Release date: April 25, 2013
Next release date: June 27, 2013
March - April 2013 Update
- The U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) estimates that global liquid fuels1 consumption outpaced production in March and April 2013, resulting in a 1.1-million-barrel-per-day (bbl/d) average draw in global oil stocks (Table 1, Figure 1). Despite consumption exceeding production, crude oil prices were lower during the two-month period, reflecting weaker expectations for global economic growth. The Brent front month futures price reached its lowest level since July 2012, averaging about $99 per barrel for the five-day period ending April 23, about $15 per barrel lower compared with the five-day average ending February 26 (Figure 2). The average Brent price for March and April 2013 is nearly $16 per barrel below its average for the same two-month period last year (Table 5).
- Global liquid fuels consumption during March and April decreased by an average of 0.2 million bbl/d,2 from its average during January and February, consistent with typical seasonal patterns. However, average world consumption in March and April 2013 was 1.1 million bbl/d higher than the same time period last year and the three-year average (Table 1). Non-OECD countries accounted for nearly all of the increase in total world consumption over year-ago levels and the three-year average (Table 2). On the other hand, European members of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) saw consumption decrease by 0.3 million bbl/d on average during March and April 2013 compared with the same time period last year.
- Global liquid fuels production during March and April increased by an average of 0.2 million bbl/d from its average during January and February, mainly as a result of a slight increase in production from countries outside of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC). However, world supply decreased by an average of 0.8 million bbl/d in March and April 2013 compared to year-ago levels, mainly due to a decline in OPEC production, which more than offset increases in non-OPEC production. OPEC liquid fuels production fell by 1.2 million bbl/d in March and April 2013 compared with last year, as a result of lower crude oil output in Saudi Arabia, Iran, and to a lesser extent, Nigeria and Algeria. The overall decrease occurred despite increased crude production in Iraq and higher OPEC non-crude liquids output (Table 3).
- The total volume of production that is off line due to unplanned outages in non-OPEC countries averaged 0.9 million bbl/d in March and April 2013, virtually unchanged from the previous two-month period. Unplanned non-OPEC outages continue to exceed the more typical levels that prevailed in the fourth quarter 2011 (Figure 3). During March and April, increased outage volumes in Yemen and Syria offset much of the declining shut-in volumes in China, the North Sea, Australia, and to a lesser extent, South Sudan.
- Iran's liquid fuels production averaged 3.4 million bbl/d in March and April 2013, of which 2.8 million bbl/d was crude oil, remaining flat compared with the January and February 2013 production level. Nonetheless, Iran's liquid fuels production remains well below its year-ago level of 3.8 million bbl/d and the three-year average production total of 4.0 million bbl/d (Table 1).
- Global surplus capacity increased by an average of 0.8 million bbl/d in March and April 2013 compared to the year-ago level, but it still remains 0.2 million bbl/d lower than the historical three-year average (Table 3). The estimate of effective surplus crude oil production capacity does not include additional capacity that may be technically available in Iran, but which is off line due to the impacts of U.S. and European Union (EU) sanctions on Iran's ability to sell its oil.
- Based on the global balance between production and consumption, net global inventories, including those held in emerging market economies, fell by 1.4 million bbl/d and 0.7 million bbl/d in March and April, respectively (Table 2). The net inventory withdrawals during March and April 2013 mark a return to a typical seasonal inventory change pattern. However, the stock draw during these two months is in sharp contrast to the unusual 0.9-million-bbl/d increase in total stocks recorded during March and April 2012.
- The greater spare production capacity and smaller inventory draws in March and April 2013 compared with January and February 2013 support a looser international crude oil market and a decrease in backwardation (when near-month prices are higher than farther dated prices) in the Brent futures curve. For the five-day period ending April 23, the 1st-13th month time spread for the Brent futures curve was under $3 per barrel, a decrease of about $5 per barrel since the five-day period ending February 26 (Figure 4). It is the lowest amount of backwardation in the Brent futures curve since July 2012.
- EIA has slightly revised the preliminary estimates for January and February 2013 liquid fuels production and stock draws published in the previous edition of this report. World liquid fuels production was revised down by 0.2 million bbl/d to average 88.1 million bbl/d for the two month period, as global stock draws increased by the same amount to average 1.5 million bbl/d. The change in total production was mainly the result of numerous small revisions throughout the world.
|Item||March 2013||April 2013||Mar. - Apr. 2013 Average||Mar. - Apr. 2012 Average||2010 - 2012 Average|
|Total Global Liquid Fuels|
|Total Global Liquid Fuels Production (a) (million bbl/d)||88.2||88.3||88.3||89.1||87.8|
|Total Global Liquid Fuels Consumption (b) (million bbl/d)||89.6||89.0||89.3||88.2||88.2|
|Biofuels Production (c) (million bbl/d)||1.5||1.7||1.6||1.6||1.8|
|Biofuels Consumption (c) (million bbl/d)||1.8||1.8||1.8||1.8||1.7|
|Iran Liquid Fuels Production (million bbl/d)||3.4||3.4||3.4||3.8||4.0|
|Iran Liquid Fuels Consumption (million bbl/d)||1.8||1.7||1.7||1.7||1.7|
|Petroleum and Petroleum Products Produced and Consumed in Countries Other Than Iran|
|Production (d) (million bbl/d)||83.3||83.3||83.3||83.6||82.0|
|Consumption (d) (million bbl/d)||86.0||85.5||85.8||84.7||84.8|
|Production minus Consumption||-2.7||-2.3||-2.4||-1.1||-2.8|
|World Inventory Net Withdrawals Including Iran (million bbl/d)||1.4||0.7||1.1||-0.9||0.4|
|Estimated OECD Inventory Level (e) (million barrels)||2,580||2,578||2,579||2,650||--|
|Surplus Production Capacity|
|OPEC Surplus Crude Oil Production Capacity (f) (million bbl/d)||2.8||2.8||2.8||2.0||3.0|
|Oil Price Level|
|WTI Front Month Futures Price (g) ($ per barrel)||92.96||91.63||92.37||104.84||89.62|
|Brent Front Month Futures Price (h) ($ per barrel)||109.54||103.42||106.80||122.61||100.98|
|RBOB Front Month Futures Price (i) ($ per gallon)||3.12||2.84||3.00||3.30||2.62|
|Oil Price Time Spread|
|WTI 1st - 13th Month Futures Spread ($ per barrel)||1.88||2.00||1.93||-0.93||-3.16|
|Brent 1st - 13th Month Futures Spread ($ per barrel)||6.41||3.37||5.05||7.21||1.31|
Note: The term "liquid fuels" encompasses crude oil, lease condensate, natural gas plant liquids, biofuels, coal-to-liquids, gas-to-liquids, and refinery processing gains, which are important to consider in concert due to the inter-related supply, demand, and price dynamics of petroleum, petroleum products, and related fuels.
1 The term "liquid fuels" encompasses petroleum and petroleum products and close substitutes, including crude oil, lease condensate, natural gas plant liquids, biofuels, coal-to-liquids, gas-to-liquids, and refinery processing gain.
2 The growth rates referenced in this report may not exactly match corresponding values in tables as a result of slight differences in rounding.