### U.S. Oil Output Hits Record Highs
The United States assumed the position of the world’s top crude producer when its production hit 11.6 million barrels per day, which it did last week, according to a report released by the Energy Information Administration (EIA) yesterday. The report showed that the U.S. has increased its crude production by 22.2 percent this year alone, increasing production by 2 million barrels per day from the same period last year, and has tripled its production in the past decade. The U.S. government has set its target to produce 12.1 million barrels per day on average in the coming year. Russia is currently producing around 11.4 million barrels per day and Saudi Arabia is currently producing 10.7 million barrels per day.
OPEC members are expected to meet this weekend and it is largely expected that they will focus on how to react to America’s increasing production. Analysts have noted that there is a real possibility that OPEC will implement production cuts as it has in the past, to prevent prices from dropping further. Oil prices have tanked recently due to worries about a global supply glut and the increase in U.S. production. In addition to production increases in the U.S., Russia, Saudi Arabia, Iraq and Brazil have all increased production in recent years, contributing to oversupply.
On Thursday, oil prices were modestly higher, with U.S. WTI futures up 11 cents per barrel to $61.78 per barrel as of 2:37 p.m HK/SIN. Brent crude futures were up 0.07 percent to $72.12 per barrel.
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