Oil ex­tends losses

Kuwait Times - - BUSINESS -

Crude oil prices fell for a fourth day yes­ter­day as jit­tery in­vestors awaited of­fi­cial US stock­pile fig­ures later in the day after in­dus­try data showed a sur­prise build in in­ven­to­ries, un­der­lin­ing the mar­ket’s sup­ply over­hang. The Amer­i­can Pe­tro­leum In­sti­tute said that crude stock­piles rose by 9.3 mil­lion bar­rels in the week to Oct 28, more than nine times the amount ex­pected by an­a­lysts polled by Reuters. US West Texas In­ter­me­di­ate crude fell by 70 cents to $45.97 by 1011 GMT and Brent crude was down 69 cents at $47.45. Both con­tracts were at their low­est since Sept 28. Of­fi­cial in­ven­tory data from the US gov­ern­ment’s En­ergy In­for­ma­tion Ad­min­is­tra­tion will be re­leased later to­day.

Ris­ing pro­duc­tion from mem­bers of the Or­ga­ni­za­tion of the Pe­tro­leum Ex­port­ing Coun­tries (OPEC) also weighed on prices. “We have in­creas­ing pro­duc­tion from Libya and Nige­ria help­ing to cre­ate more sur­plus. Also, all OPEC mem­bers are pro­duc­ing as much as they can to have a high base line to ne­go­ti­ate from at the OPEC meet­ing,” said SEB chief com­modi­ties an­a­lyst Bjarne Schiel­d­rop. Nige­rian Oil Min­is­ter Em­manuel Ibe Kachikwu said on Tues­day that oil out­put had re­cov­ered to 2.1 mil­lion bar­rels per day. The West African coun­try’s Trans Niger Pipe­line, one of two con­duits to ex­port Bonny Light crude, re­opened on Oct. 28 after a month­long shut­down, a Shell spokes­woman said late on Tues­day.

Libya has dou­bled its out­put since mid-Septem­ber and is cur­rently pro­duc­ing about 590,000 bpd, state-run Na­tional Oil Corp said. OPEC pro­duc­tion is likely to set an­other record high in Oc­to­ber at 33.82 mil­lion bpd from a re­vised 33.69 mil­lion bpd in Septem­ber, ac­cord­ing to a Reuters sur­vey on Mon­day. Prices have slumped in re­cent days as hopes have faded that oil pro­duc­ers would set­tle their dif­fer­ences and agree to out­put cuts when OPEC meets on Nov. 30.

“Those who were hop­ing for some up­side from any sort of pro­duc­tion agree­ment ap­pear to have had their hopes dashed,” said Ric Spooner, chief mar­ket an­a­lyst at CMC Mar­kets in Syd­ney. “It looks like there are spec­u­la­tive longs quit­ting the mar­ket.” Mean­while, Saudi Aramco, the state-owned pro­ducer from Saudi Ara­bia, ex­pects prices to rise in the first half of 2017 as the mar­ket re­turns to bal­ance, Chief Ex­ec­u­tive Of­fi­cer Amin Nasser said late on Tues­day. Nasser also said that prepa­ra­tions for the oil gi­ant’s ini­tial pub­lic of­fer­ing are go­ing well and it is still aims to list in 2018. —Reuters

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