Why are oil prices falling? 5 reasons you might not expect

Here are the five main reasons why oil prices have hit their lowest levels in years.

5. Libya and Iraq are back

Esam Omran Al-Fetori/Reuters
Rebels under Ibrahim Jathran stand on a boat at Es Sider port in Ras Lanuf, Libya, on March 11, 2014. Since then, Libya has shakily reintegrated into the global oil markets.

On top of burgeoning US output, oil production from typically volatile regions has been surprisingly stable. Libya, Iraq, South Sudan, and Nigeria have all maintained production despite the threat of instability, flooding the market with oil at a time when demand is low.

The threat of disruptions in oil production hasn’t caused tremors in the market like it used to, either. Even when the US began airstrikes against Islamic State militants in Iraq, oil markets shrugged, suggesting oil markets are increasingly cushioned by production growth in the US and elsewhere.

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