Oil production might fall further in 2017.
After reaching an agreement between member states and non-member states alike, the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) is mulling an additional agreement to cut oil output once again.
OPEC's Secretary General Mohammad Barkindo told reporters on Thursday that the group was considering accelerating a timetable for lower oil production, which would lower oil reserves around the world and prop up commodity prices.
"We have our target in accelerating those draw-downs to bring them closer to the five-year level," he said, according to Bloomberg.
Barkindo added that markets have responded "positively" to the group's previous commitment to cut oil output around, which the group agreed on at the end of November last year. (See also: OPEC Cuts Boost USO, UCO.)
Shortly before the agreement was struck, several analysts expressed skepticism whether all OPEC nations would agree to cut production and whether all nations would abide by their promises. Iraq in particular was expected to balk at an agreement. Barkindo addressed these doubts on Thursday, saying that Iraqi's Energy Minister "has reassured me Iraq will implement its part of the deal fully and on a timely basis."
Long oil ETFs were up in early morning trading, including United States Oil (USO) and ProShares Ultra Bloomberg Crude Oil (UCO). ETFs that place leveraged bets on oil were also responding, including VelocityShares 3x Long Crude Oil ETN (UWT) and VelocityShares 3x Inverse Crude Oil ETN (DWT).
Oil markets saw intense volatility both before and after OPEC's decision at the end of November to cut oil production but have seen muted trading activity in the early days of 2017. Oil prices have fallen around 3 percent since the beginning of 2017 but remain up 16 percent from a year ago.
Several oil producers speaking in Abu Dhabi said they expect a further oil production cut later in 2017.