Oil prices inched higher Tuesday, rising on OPEC’s newly extended production cuts and tensions with Iran, but still under pressure from demand concerns tied to slowing global growth and the trade dispute between the U.S. and China.
“A decade ago, or even a few years ago, oil prices would probably be a lot higher,” even with these same concerns, Harder said. “But because of this slowing economic growth and, of course, the boom in American oil production over the last decade, we’re seeing prices more tempered despite the fact that there’s all this unrest and uncertainty going on.”
Harder spoke shortly after the U.S. Energy Information Administration, a statistics-focused offshoot of the Department of Energy, released its short-term energy outlook. The report showed U.S. oil production booming, particularly in the oil-rich area of western Texas known as the Permian Basin.
“That report … finds that [U.S.] oil production is continuing to break records,” Harder said. The agency estimated that U.S. production totaled 11 million barrels per day in 2018, an all-time high for production and year-over-year growth.
“It should be 13 million barrels a day in the next year, and that’s more than double what it was just a decade ago,” she said. “That’s significant.”
The U.S. is also boosting its standing in the petroleum market, becoming a net exporter of petroleum-based products rather than an importer, based on the EIA report.
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