President Joe Biden announced a coordinated release of oil between the U.S., India, China, Japan, South Korea and U.K. Oil prices have jumped more than 50% year-to-date, hitting multi-year highs as demand outstripped supply.

Fatih Birol, executive director of the International Energy Agency, criticizes "artificial tightness" in energy markets. "Some of the key strains in today's markets may be considered as artificial tightness," Birol says. "In oil markets today we see close to 6 million barrels per day of spare production capacity," he says.

U.S., India, China, Japan, South Korea and the U.K. will release 50 million barrels from the Strategic Petroleum Reserve. It is the first such move of its kind. Energy analysts assess the effectiveness of a U.S.-led pledge to release oil from strategic reserves.

OPEC and non-OPEC producers, an influential group often referred to as OPEC+, have repeatedly dismissed U.S. calls to increase supply and ease prices in recent months. Of that total, 32 million barrels will be an exchange over the next several months, while 18 million barrels are an acceleration of a previously authorized sale.
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