The Wall Street Journal: International Energy Agency trims oil-demand forecast due to delta variant


The impact of Hurricane Ida and other oil supply outages will take a sizable chunk out of global oil production this year, the International Energy Agency said Tuesday.

In its monthly market report, the energy watchdog cut its supply rebound forecast for 2021 by 150,000 barrels a day and cut its demand forecast by 100,000 barrels a day, citing the impact of the delta variant of Covid-19.

While offshore installations have been slow to restart production after the outages triggered by Hurricane Ida, refineries have been quick to restart operations, forcing sharp stock draws of both crude oil and refined products, the IEA said. It noted that both the U.S. and China have recently tapped their strategic oil reserves to keep refiners operating.

“It is only by early 2022 that supply will be high enough to allow oil stocks to be replenished,” the Paris-based organization said. “In the meantime, strategic oil stocks from the U.S. and China may go some way to help plug the gap.”

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