IEA: Oil price dip holds little effect for shale producers

According to a recent report form the International Energy Agency (IEA), U.S. producers should be able to weather the market slump for crude far better than their international counterparts. The "vast majority" of U.S. crude is produced far below the current price of crude, meaning domestic producers should have little difficulty dealing with the current price drop, Maria van der Hoeven, executive director of the International Energy Agency, explained in the report. 

As of writing, Brent oil commands $88 per barrel. This represents a 23 percent drop from the year's $115 peak in June, but van der Hoeven explains there is no need for alarm. 

"Some 98 percent of crude oil and condensates from the United States have a breakeven price of below $80 and 82 percent had a breakeven price of $60 or lower," she told Reuters in an interview. 

She explained that the price drop may affect OPEC members whose budgets are based on prices above $100 per barrel, many of whom have already called for output cuts. 

With record-breaking domestic production taking place, OPEC has implied they will take no action to stem the rush of crude from shale plays. Saudi Arabia, who produced a third of OPEC's output last month, has also told Reuters that it is comfortable with the current price slump. Van der Hoeven explained that the lowered price could help to bolster the economies of those countries that rely heavily on oil imports. 

These changes to market conditions may have some oil drilling companies seeking new means to lower overhead and protect current margins. Oil and gas strategy consulting can help to identify any inefficiencies and help organizations emerge from the current slump period more competitive.