U.S. crude oil exports averaged 2.33 million barrels per day one week earlier in April, a record-setting amount going back a quarter of a century, according Energy Information Administration data.
The week ending on April 20 was the first time exports hit over 2 million barrels daily since the last week of March. The number may be hit more and more frequently, however, as the year progresses.
“We will push into 2 million barrels a day consistently over the summer,” Tortoise Managing Director Rob Thummel told Bloomberg. Thummel’s company handles roughly $16 billion worth of energy assets and investments.
Thummel also predicts the U.S. share of the international crude market will jump 50 percent in the coming decades, from a market share of 12 percent now to around 18 percent.
U.S. crude exports have climbed steadily since 2015, when Congress lifted a ban on exporting American crude. The move came ahead of an agreement by the international oil cartel Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) and several other petroleum-producing countries such as Russia to stifle oil production. The countries’ agreement, made in January 2017, will last at least until the end of this year or until an international glut of crude oil is sufficiently gone.
The result has been U.S. crude flooding into markets and undercutting OPEC’s influence and share of the international oil market. The U.S. is now rivaling Russia and Saudi Arabia to be the world’s largest oil producer, Reuters reports.
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