Global oil glut pressures prices; WTI below US$45
Oil prices fell again Thursday in a glum market as the global oversupply of crude oil looked entrenched and demand prospects weak.
U.S. benchmark West Texas Intermediate for September delivery fell 49 U. S. cents to US$44.66 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange, closing below US$45 for the first time since March. The WTI contract was now barely US$1 above its lowest years.
Brent North Sea crude for September, the international benchmark, closed at US$49.52 a barrel in London, down seven cents from the day before.
The crude glut is largely responsible for the roughly 50-percent decline in oil prices since mid-2014. The United States is producing crude at high levels and output by the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Coun-
six tries ( OPEC) continues to exceed the cartel’s quota of 30 million barrels per day.
In addition, investors were looking ahead to additional supplies of oil coming into the market as part of last month’s historic deal between six major powers and Iran over its nuclear program.
In exchange for curbing its nuclear program, Tehran would see the lifting of sanctions, which have slashed its oil exports.