Oil edges up from 2-week lows but gains limited

04 March, 2018, 04:00 | Author: Celia Hoffman

The U.S. West Texas Intermediate crude April contract, according to investing.com, was down about 0.34% at $60.80 a barrel by 07:45 GMT, just off Thursday's two-and-a-half week lows of $60.20.

Data on the website of the Energy and Mineral Resources Ministry indicated, Thursday, that the OPEC has succeeded in trimming oil production by 1.8 million barrels per day since 2016.

"It is likely the monthly data will show US crude oil production in December about 200,000-300,000 bpd above what was estimated in the weekly reports", Petromatrix analyst Olivier Jakob said in a note.

President Donald Trump announced he would impose hefty tariffs on the two metals to protect USA producers, risking retaliation from major trade partners like China, Europe and neighbouring Canada.

Brent crude settled at $66.63 a barrel, an 87 cent drop from Monday.

"Then we have the volatility in the USA dollar and the implications of the tariff news to factor in", he said.

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US crude is on track for a 4 percent drop this week, its first weekly decline in three, having given up much of the gains in recent weeks when sentiment was boosted by a fall in inventories at the Cushing delivery point for WTI.

United States crude oil futures fell today, taking declines to a fourth day after news of planned USA tariffs on steel and aluminum raised fears of a trade war. US crude oil production increased steadily through 2017, reaching its highest level in more than three decades. [FRX/] A strong dollar makes oil more expensive for buyers using other currencies.

A surge in North American crude output also has the market anxious, despite efforts by the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries and external producers such as Russian Federation to limit global crude production.

The EIA will release monthly data on crude supply on Wednesday, which analysts expect to include substantial upward revisions to US oil output, perhaps to an all-time record.

"Yesterday's (Wednesday's) report ... has reawakened concerns that US production levels will offset OPEC production cuts", Gene McGillian, manager of market research at Tradition Energy in Stamford, Conn., told Reuters.


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