Oil prices advance in Asia to US$45 a barrel
Oil prices climbed in Asia Thursday, holding above US$45 a barrel following a fall in U.S. crude production, but concerns over excess global supplies and soft demand continued to cap gains.
In the United States, a closelywatched report seen as a gauge for oil demand in the world’s biggest economy showed that commercial crude inventories rose by four million barrels to 457.9 million barrels by Sept. 25.
That was about 28 percent higher than a year ago, keeping inventories at a level not seen in at least 80 years for this time of year, said the U.S. Department of Energy report. But the report also showed U.S. crude production falling by 40,000 barrels per day to 9.096 million barrels per day (bpd), which is positive news for the oversupplied global market.
Meanwhile, output from the OPEC group of oil exporters stood at 32 million bpd in September, down from previous month but still above its quota, Bloomberg News said.
In afternoon Asian trade, U.S. benchmark West Texas Intermediate (WTI) for November delivery was up 60 cents to US$45.69 and Brent crude for November added 43 cents to US$48.80 a barrel.
“Oil prices remain stuck within the month-long consolidation range, with WTI trapped within US$40-50, and Brent within US$45-55,” said Bernard Aw, market strategist at IG Markets in Singapore.