Outbound shipments of U.S. crude oil have exceeded 1.2 million barrels a day, surpassing last month's daily production of oil in 3 OPEC countries: Algeria, Ecuador and Qatar, per the Financial Times. Following the lifting of Washington's 40-year-old ban on crude oil exports in 2015, U.S. oil shipments to foreign countries — such as Canada, Spain, Singapore and China — have risen dramatically, far exceeding the baseline projections made by the U.S. Energy Information Administration. As the FT points out, the strong exports are a result of:
- The oil glut in the world market has made U.S. oil a relative bargain compared with other grades.
- A rebound in oil prices last year has encouraged U.S. companies to increase drilling. The EIA estimates domestic produciton is above 9 million barrels a day for the first time in 10 months.
- U.S. refineries, unlike OPEC, haven't done much to "mop up" the glut.
- Rates for leasing supertankers have declined, making its cheaper to transfer oil to foreign countries.
I remember when someone prominent - I wish I could remember the name - said that America could not drill it's way out of the oil shortage. I guess that was downright wrong.