Oil prices ad­vance in Asia to US$45 a bar­rel

The China Post - - BUSINESS INDEX & -

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.

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