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Oil prices flatten as rise in U.S. production weighs

Reuters  |  LONDON 

By Libby George

(Reuters) - prices were largely flat on Thursday after steep losses the previous session, with rising U.S. production weighing against comments from leading producers that an extension to OPEC-led supply cuts was likely.

Brent futures were at $52.93 barrel at 1345 GMT, unchanged from their last close. U.S. crude futures were down 9 cents at $50.50 a barrel.

Both benchmarks had traded more than 50 cents higher earlier in the day, but gains eased at the start of U.S. trading hours.

"The U.S. market perhaps doesn't believe in the market balance that OPEC would have us believe," said Hans van Cleef, senior energy economist with ABN AMRO.

OPEC members Saudi Arabia and Kuwait signalled that an effort by the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries and other producers, including Russia, to cut output was likely to be extended beyond June.

But bloated inventories weighed. Despite a drop in U.S. crude stocks last week, an unexpected 1.5-million-barrel build in gasoline stocks drove prices more than 3.5 percent lower on Wednesday.

U.S. crude production rose to 9.25 million barrels per day, official data showed, up almost 10 percent since mid-2016.

Patrick Pouyanne, the chief executive of French and gas giant Total, said on Thursday prices could fall again by the end of the year due to a rapid increase in U.S. shale production.

"The rebalancing in U.S. crude stocks may have got under way, but concerns about further gasoline builds are rife even as the U.S. summer driving season shifts up a gear," said Stephen Brennock, an analyst with PVM Associates.

"With questions hanging over U.S. gasoline demand, any further product builds will act as a brake on the price recovery," he said.

fuel stocks are well above the five-year average, and Saudi Energy Minister Khalid al-Falih was quoted on Thursday as saying inventories remained elevated in part because traders were selling supplies out of tanker storage.

In China, signs emerged that refiners were using record crude imports to produce more fuel such as gasoline and diesel than the country can absorb.

China's March gasoline output rose 2.5 percent year-on-year to 11.24 million tonnes, the highest level since at least April 2014, China's National Bureau of Statistics said, adding fuel into an Asian market that is already well supplied.

(Additional reporting by Henning Gloystein; in Singapore; Editing by Dale Hudson and Edmund Blair)

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

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Oil prices flatten as rise in U.S. production weighs

LONDON (Reuters) - Oil prices were largely flat on Thursday after steep losses the previous session, with rising U.S. production weighing against comments from leading Gulf oil producers that an extension to OPEC-led supply cuts was likely.

By Libby George

(Reuters) - prices were largely flat on Thursday after steep losses the previous session, with rising U.S. production weighing against comments from leading producers that an extension to OPEC-led supply cuts was likely.

Brent futures were at $52.93 barrel at 1345 GMT, unchanged from their last close. U.S. crude futures were down 9 cents at $50.50 a barrel.

Both benchmarks had traded more than 50 cents higher earlier in the day, but gains eased at the start of U.S. trading hours.

"The U.S. market perhaps doesn't believe in the market balance that OPEC would have us believe," said Hans van Cleef, senior energy economist with ABN AMRO.

OPEC members Saudi Arabia and Kuwait signalled that an effort by the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries and other producers, including Russia, to cut output was likely to be extended beyond June.

But bloated inventories weighed. Despite a drop in U.S. crude stocks last week, an unexpected 1.5-million-barrel build in gasoline stocks drove prices more than 3.5 percent lower on Wednesday.

U.S. crude production rose to 9.25 million barrels per day, official data showed, up almost 10 percent since mid-2016.

Patrick Pouyanne, the chief executive of French and gas giant Total, said on Thursday prices could fall again by the end of the year due to a rapid increase in U.S. shale production.

"The rebalancing in U.S. crude stocks may have got under way, but concerns about further gasoline builds are rife even as the U.S. summer driving season shifts up a gear," said Stephen Brennock, an analyst with PVM Associates.

"With questions hanging over U.S. gasoline demand, any further product builds will act as a brake on the price recovery," he said.

fuel stocks are well above the five-year average, and Saudi Energy Minister Khalid al-Falih was quoted on Thursday as saying inventories remained elevated in part because traders were selling supplies out of tanker storage.

In China, signs emerged that refiners were using record crude imports to produce more fuel such as gasoline and diesel than the country can absorb.

China's March gasoline output rose 2.5 percent year-on-year to 11.24 million tonnes, the highest level since at least April 2014, China's National Bureau of Statistics said, adding fuel into an Asian market that is already well supplied.

(Additional reporting by Henning Gloystein; in Singapore; Editing by Dale Hudson and Edmund Blair)

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

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Business Standard
177 22

Oil prices flatten as rise in U.S. production weighs

By Libby George

(Reuters) - prices were largely flat on Thursday after steep losses the previous session, with rising U.S. production weighing against comments from leading producers that an extension to OPEC-led supply cuts was likely.

Brent futures were at $52.93 barrel at 1345 GMT, unchanged from their last close. U.S. crude futures were down 9 cents at $50.50 a barrel.

Both benchmarks had traded more than 50 cents higher earlier in the day, but gains eased at the start of U.S. trading hours.

"The U.S. market perhaps doesn't believe in the market balance that OPEC would have us believe," said Hans van Cleef, senior energy economist with ABN AMRO.

OPEC members Saudi Arabia and Kuwait signalled that an effort by the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries and other producers, including Russia, to cut output was likely to be extended beyond June.

But bloated inventories weighed. Despite a drop in U.S. crude stocks last week, an unexpected 1.5-million-barrel build in gasoline stocks drove prices more than 3.5 percent lower on Wednesday.

U.S. crude production rose to 9.25 million barrels per day, official data showed, up almost 10 percent since mid-2016.

Patrick Pouyanne, the chief executive of French and gas giant Total, said on Thursday prices could fall again by the end of the year due to a rapid increase in U.S. shale production.

"The rebalancing in U.S. crude stocks may have got under way, but concerns about further gasoline builds are rife even as the U.S. summer driving season shifts up a gear," said Stephen Brennock, an analyst with PVM Associates.

"With questions hanging over U.S. gasoline demand, any further product builds will act as a brake on the price recovery," he said.

fuel stocks are well above the five-year average, and Saudi Energy Minister Khalid al-Falih was quoted on Thursday as saying inventories remained elevated in part because traders were selling supplies out of tanker storage.

In China, signs emerged that refiners were using record crude imports to produce more fuel such as gasoline and diesel than the country can absorb.

China's March gasoline output rose 2.5 percent year-on-year to 11.24 million tonnes, the highest level since at least April 2014, China's National Bureau of Statistics said, adding fuel into an Asian market that is already well supplied.

(Additional reporting by Henning Gloystein; in Singapore; Editing by Dale Hudson and Edmund Blair)

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

image
Business Standard
177 22