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‘Tremendous’ supply damage may keep crude prices rising

Crude oil prices dipped on Friday, but the two-month trend upwards is seen continuing by oil expert Amrita Sen.

The co-founder and chief oil analyst of Energy Aspects told CNBC on Friday that cuts to supplies from non-OPEC countries would help balance the market in the coming months.


Non-OPEC supplies have declined by around 1 million barrels per day, according to Sen, largely due to unplanned outages in Nigeria and Canada.

"I think the secular trend is higher," she told CNBC in London.

"The damage we are doing to the non-OPEC supplies is tremendous at this point in time … It is mainly because of all these unplanned outages — Nigeria, in particular, where we are losing nearly 700,000 barrels per day. But even if these unplanned outages do get resolved — unlikely at this stage — the underlying damage to the supply side is tremendous," Sen later added.

She said crude prices had recovered faster than forecast.

This month, Goldman Sachs said WTI spot prices would rise faster in the second-half of 2016 and 2017 than it had previously expected, but the recovery would be shallower.

It raised its 2016 average forecast for WTI prices to $44.60 per barrel, from the $38.40 predicted in March. However, the bank cut its forecast for 2017 to $52.50 a barrel from $57.50.

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Brent and WTI crude futures for July reached $50 per barrel on Thursday for the first time since October but have since declined to nearer $49 per barrel.

Sen said there might be a small correction in prices in the near-term, despite the trend upwards.

"It needs to be a slow move higher — because inventories are very high, any premature sharp increases in prices can of course derail, ultimately, the rebalancing process," she told CNBC.

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