OPEC Will Blink First in Battle With Shale Drillers, Poll Shows

OPEC Output

U.S. shale drillers won’t scale back output quickly enough for OPEC to avoid production cuts this year, according to a quarterly poll of Bloomberg subscribers.

Forty-nine percent of analysts, traders and investors surveyed said the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries will have to lower its production target this year, while 34 percent said shale drillers will lower output in time. Seventeen percent weren’t sure.

Fifty-eight percent of respondents who said OPEC will cut its production target expect it to happen in the second half of the year, compared to 34 percent who see it happening before the end of June. The poll of 481 investors, analysts and traders who are Bloomberg subscribers was conducted Jan. 14-15 by Selzer & Co., a Des Moines, Iowa-based firm. It has a margin of error of plus or minus 4.5 percentage points.

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