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OPEC holds to basic supply and demand where shale aims for profits

News concerning U.S. relations with Iran over the nuclear deal agreed to by the Obama administration and the ever-growing political and economic crisis in Venezuela boosted U.S. energy stocks Monday as the prospect of higher demand for U.S. oil drove a barrel of West Texas Intermediate to yearly highs.

U.S. shale oil producers have been producing an average 8 million barrels of oil per day, the highest production number since the data were initially recorded three years ago in 2016. Over that period, producers have shown that their production is directly related to the price of a barrel of WTI, particularly when the price is at or above $50.

OPEC, meanwhile, has played more of a market game, adjusting its production to prices to manage profits by manipulating supply. Compared to OPEC's U.S. shale counterparts, $50 appears to be its break point at which production is capped.