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Oil price climbs as Opec offers early consensus on renewed deal
20 May 2017, 10:12 | Jan Cross
S. Arabia Russia Signal Oil Cuts Extension Into 2018
Global benchmark Brent futures were up 25 cents, or 0.5 percent, at $48.98 a barrel at 0200 GMT.
A pick up in United States oil production has contributed to the imbalance in the market but there were signs last week that American crude inventories had fallen. Moreover, distillate stockpiles dipped 1.6 million barrels, compared to analysts expected 1 million drop.
But prices, however, slumped in recent weeks due to rising US production, which undermined the OPEC-led efforts to reduce a global crude glut.
But after Brent prices fell back below $50 per barrel last week, analysts said producers felt forced to act.
Saudi Aramco, which is a state-owned, is going to low oil supplies to Asian customers in June by 7 million barrels.
The industry group the American Petroleum Institute reported a fall in USA crude inventories by 5.8 million barrels last week, which was more than the 1.8 million-barrel slide analysts predicted.
Meanwhile, crude prices bounced back above $47 and continued to surge as investors' sentiment on the rising levels of US oil output softened after the EIA reported a bullish inventory data.
"As long as you've got those builds in gasoline, it is going to be hard for crude oil to rally", said Olivier Jakob, energy market strategist at Petromatrix in Zug, Switzerland.
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Saudi Arabia increased output by about 50,000 bpd, according to the secondary sources and Saudi figures, although Riyadh continues to produce less than agreed under the deal.
Elsewhere, investors continued to monitor comments from energy ministers, after Saudi oil chief Khalid Al-Falih said Monday, that he was "confident the agreement will be extended into the second half of year and possibly beyond".
"The prices are still way below $50", said Eugen Weinberg, an analyst at Commerzbank.
U.S. inventories fell by 5.25 million barrels during the week ended May 5.
Calling on U.S. to join in the rebalancing of global oil market, OPEC said "a large part of the excess supply overhang contained in floating storage has been reduced and the improvement in the world economy should help support oil demand".
Also supporting prices were comments from Algeria's energy minister that Algeria and Iraq favor extending global supply cuts when OPEC meets this month.
For 2018, oil demand is expected to increase by 300,000 bpd, down from a previously forecast rise of 340,000 bpd.
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