Our Bold Oil Price Prediction After the May OPEC Meeting

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Despite OPEC and Russia's output cuts, oil stockpiles in the USA and other major economies remain stubbornly-high - and that's spooking impatient investors.

The next meeting of OPEC and non-OPEC oil producers is schedule 30 November.

In May, however, production recovered to nearly 800,000 bpd. Stronger crude oil prices have also supported the loonie this week. However, an exemption would automatically undermine OPEC's effort to push up prices by extending the cut agreement, OilPrice indicated.

Canada and Libya's production is also inching higher, which together with surging United States production has hindered Opec's efforts so far this year as global inventories continue to remain at elevated level.

The deal agreed a year ago saw the group's member countries reduce production by 1.2 million barrels a day to 32.5 million barrels, effective from January, and it has succeeded in pushing prices back above the $50 benchmark.

Keenly awaited talks between the bloc and Russian Federation ended Thursday with news that a deal to reduce output for six months until the end of June would be increased by another nine months in a bid to address an ongoing supply glut and support prices.

In recent years, OPEC's main target has been USA shale producers who pumped much more oil into the market than anyone expected and contributed to the price crash in 2014.

Following the meeting, Saudi Arabian Energy Minister Khalid al-Falih lauded OPEC's consensus over the output cut.

Goldman has set its second half 2017 spot price forecast for Brent crude at US$57 a barrel.

OPEC, Non-OPEC group agree to extend production cuts through Q1 2018
But that disappointed some investors who had hoped that OPEC might reduce output even further to drain stocks more quickly. But the hoped-for benefits could be short-lived. "The U.S. shale producer does what everyone thought was impossible".

ANALYST VIEWPOINT: Minutes from the U.S. Federal Reserve Open Market Committee's May meetings "confirm a benign approach from the Fed while emphasizing its commitment to normalization of monetary policy over the medium term", said Michael McCarthy of CMC Markets.

Share prices closed higher for the week, snapping a two-seek slide, as investors watched how martial law in Mindanao would stop violence involving Islamic extremists.

The price of Brent plunged $2.02 per barrel after the announcement to $51.94 while West Texas Intermediate shed $2.05 at $49.31.

US oil production has risen 10 percent in the past year to meet demand, undermining OPEC's efforts.

One supportive factor for oil prices have been U.S. data showing seven weeks of draws on domestic crude inventories, said Mark Watkins, regional investment manager at U.S. Bank.

The cuts, agreed at a meeting of OPEC and other major producers led by Russian Federation in Vienna on Thursday, were aimed at tightening the market and support the plummeting prices.

Kimura said the extended cuts could mean demand may exceed supply in 2017, which would be the first time in years.

However, the scale of output cut remains the same at 1.8 million barrels a day.

"OPEC members had a chance today but bottled it". The American shale producers would have been the unintended beneficiaries of deeper production cuts even if such cuts would have succeeded in the OPEC-led group's objective of getting commercial stocks of crude oil down.