Oil price up as Iran sanctions kick in
Oil prices recovered some ground on Monday after five days of heavy losses as the United States imposed a range of punitive sanctions on Iran, aiming to curb exports by the Islamic Republic, including its sales of fuel.
The move is part of a wider effort by US President Donald Trump to curb Iran’s missile and nuclear programmes and diminish its influence in the Middle East.
Iran said it would continue to sell oil abroad.
Benchmark Brent crude oil was up 80 cents a barrel at $73.63. US light crude was 50 cents higher at $63.64.
Both oil benchmarks have lost more than 15 per cent since hitting four-year highs in early October, as hedge funds have cut bullish bets on crude to a one-year low.
Oil markets have been anticipating the sanctions for months and the world’s biggest producers have been increasing output.
Joint output from Russia, the United States and Saudi Arabia rose above 33 million bpd for the first time in October, up 10 million bpd since 2010, with all three pumping at or near record volumes.
In the Middle East, the Abu Dhabi National Oil Co plans to increase its oil production capacity to 4 million bpd by the end of 2020 and to 5 million bpd by 2030, it said, from output of just over 3 million bpd.