A week before OPEC+ ministers meet to deliberate on production policy, technical experts reduced their forecasts for how tight global oil markets will be this quarter.

According to the coalition's Joint Technical Committee (JTC), the global oil supply imbalance will average 300,000 bpd in Q4. That's a lot less than the 1.1 million barrel daily shortage reported in the initial statistics submitted to the panel, which later amended its view based on newer demand data. 

On November 4, OPEC and its allies will meet to discuss their plans to gradually restore some of the production that was paused during the pandemic. The revised supply and demand data could support Saudi Arabia's cautious stance, which has resisted requests to raise output more quickly.

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The OPEC+ alliance, jointly led by Saudi Arabia and Russia, is restoring shuttered supplies in small monthly increments of 400,000 bpd. When ministers meet next week, it's expected that another raise will be approved.

According to two sources, an OPEC+ committee cut its expectations for global oil demand growth this year to 5.7 million bpd from 5.8 million, owing to a continued robust rebound in consumption following the drop in 2020.

One source said that the JTC kept its demand prediction for next year at 4.2 million bpd. Adding that the 2021 revision was "nothing to be concerned about," as it was an update of actual data and rounding.