Crude oil prices have remained remarkably stable over the past year despite a laundry list of supply disruptions that include the Nigerian oil theft, the Syrian civil war, and, now, political unrest in Egypt. The reason for this stability is primarily the new thick supply of North American oil cushioning the markets. This has “moderated” the effect of recent outages, Adam Sieminski, administrator of the U.S. Energy Information Administration, told The Wall Street Journal.
So far, the new supply has not pushed prices lower, and analysts disagree over whether it ever will. But what cannot be disputed is that it is acting as a shock absorber for the global supply chain that transports 88 million barrels of oil to customers every day. Steady fuel prices help everyone from manufacturers to motorists.
North America has added about 1.8 million barrels of daily oil production in the past two years, and the Paris-based International Energy Agency has estimated that the continent as a whole will add an additional 3.9 million barrels of daily output by 2018.