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Oil and gas

OPEC vs. Shale: How Reuters is drilling deep into the oil war

There’s been a fierce battle between OPEC and the U.S. shale oil industry, as each vies for a stronger position in the global oil market.

From news of OPEC-led production cuts to fresh investment in U.S. shale and the effects on crude prices, Reuters has been on the front lines of the story, delivering unmatched breaking news, analysis and insight on the war between OPEC and shale, and its impact on markets, companies, economies and investors.

In the past year alone, Reuters produced nearly 300 exclusive and insight stories on OPEC or shale. Among the many highlights:

  • Reuters revealed that Shell is putting its revamped shale arm at heart of future growth (June 2016)
  • Reuters was first to report OPEC’s surprise decision to limit oil output for first time since 2008 (September 2016)
  • Reuters exclusively reported BP was shipping almost 3 million barrels of U.S. crude to customers across Asia (December 2016)
  • Reuters exclusively reported the cost of pump-at-will oil policy spurred Saudi Arabia’s OPEC U-turn (December 2016)
  • Reuters offered insight into U.S. firms’ descent on Permian Basin as oil recovers (February 2017)
  • Reuters revealed OPEC could extend or deepen supply cut if oil glut persists (February 2017)
  • Reuters shed light on Asia’s renewed crude supply worries after OPEC oil cut extension (May 2017)

Two sides to every story

Reuters energy correspondents Dmitry Zhdannikov and Ernest Scheyder recently shared some insights into how Reuters is covering this important story, from both the OPEC and Shale angles:

Dmitry Zhdannikov, chief EMEA oil and gas specialist: “The Reuters OPEC team was able to give readers a unique insight into the core debates – often to the great annoyance of OPEC, which likes to present itself as a unified group despite big political and economic tensions between its core members Saudi Arabia, Iran or Iraq. We were the first media to reveal that OPEC’s leader Saudi Arabia would refuse to cut output despite falling prices seeking to punish booming US oil output. Since then we led the story often being the first media to report crucial OPEC decisions as well as insight stories of how those deals came together. The latter served as an important indication for oil market players that the current production cuts by OPEC and non-OPEC Russia would likely be long lasting.”

Ernest Scheyder, U.S. energy correspondent: “Drawing on our unrivaled access to executives, investors, regulators and others, Reuters chronicled the U.S. shale industry’s two-year price war with OPEC from 2014 through 2016, when companies were forces to slash costs, simplifying operations, devise new funding options and lobby for U.S. crude oil exports to survive. For 2017, the U.S. shale industry’s growth engine has come alive in the Permian Basin of West Texas and New Mexico, the largest U.S. oilfield and the greatest threat to OPEC. With datelines from across the Permian and other shale basins, Reuters is the source for readers and clients seeking to understand the rising global clout of the U.S. oil industry.”

Learn more

For more on the battle between OPEC and Shale, including links to exclusive stories, analysis and insights, view this dynamic package of Reuters coverage and stay tuned to and Reuters TV for more exceptional coverage as the oil war rages on.

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