USA oil inventories down for 10th week in a row

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Prices were pressured by US data showing an increase in crude and gasoline stocks.

Brent crude futures LCOc1 were at $69.79 a barrel at 0749 GMT, down 17 cents from their last close.

United States crude oil futures topped $65 (€52) a barrel for the first time since 2014 on Wednesday, with the gap between the North American benchmark and worldwide rival Brent also narrowing sharply. Visit for more information on this news.

Over the past four weeks, demand for all petroleum products jumped more than 8 percent from the same period a year earlier to 20.5 million barrels a day.

Futures pared some gains in post-settlement trading after weekly inventory figures from industry group the American Petroleum Institute showed a surprise 4.8 million-barrel increase in crude oil stocks for last week.

Net U.S. crude imports fell last week by 71,000 bpd. In mid-July of a year ago, benchmark West Texas Intermediate crude was trading at $45 per barrel. Besides, healthy economic growth as well as the ongoing supply restraint by a group of exporters around OPEC and Russian Federation pushed oil prices up.

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Over the past four weeks, motor gasoline product supplied averaged about 8.7 million barrels per day, up by 5.4 percent from the same period previous year.

In a view of the market seen by business am live, BMI analysts acknowledged that OPEC holds sufficient spare capacity to tip the global oil market from deficit to surplus in 2018 but sees a low probability of the capacity being brought into play, given continued strong commitment to the OPEC cut deal from Saudi Arabia and its Gulf Cooperation Countries allies.

Speaking at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, Khalid al-Falih, Saudi Arabia's energy minister, said he is not concerned about the threat of US production, citing declining output from Venezuela and Mexico.

Goldman Sachs is not ready to raise its $62 target on Brent and $57.50 forecast for USA crude in 2018, but says there's a growing risk that global inventories will fall too quickly and push up prices.

For years, oil prices have been at near-record lows, Markets Insider reports.