Crude Oil Steady Ahead Of Inventories

Crude Oil Steady Ahead Of Inventories

Crude Oil Steady Ahead Of Inventories

Traders said prices had been pushed up after reports that Nigeria's militant group Niger Delta Avengers threatened to launch attacks on the country's oil sector in the next few days.

The high prices have been accompanied by money managers raising bullish positions in crude futures and options by record amounts, and this prompted Norbert Ruecker, head of commodity research at Julius Baer, to worry that "hedge fund expectations for further rising prices have reached excessive levels".

While enjoying the extra revenues, the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries, Russia and their allies remain wary of sending prices so high that USA shale production climbs even faster and the market becomes oversupplied again. The West Texas Intermediate was trading up 0.33 percent at 64.13 USA dollars Wednesday afternoon.

Brent crude futures were at $69.56 at 0255 GMT, up 18 cents, or 0.3 percent, from their last close.

Crude is within sight of its highest since December 2014, supported by supply cuts led by the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries and concern that unrest in producer nations such as Nigeria could further curb output.

“Prices. rallied on the back of noticeable de-stocking of crude inventories, ” said Fawad Razaqzada, market analyst at future brokerage

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US drillers are likely to start pumping more oil after a sharp rally in prices since December, Goldman analysts say. Yet the rally has prompted concern that competitors in the US will be emboldened to expand production.

Last week, the API reported a huge draw of 11.19 million barrels of crude oil and an increase of 4.338 million barrels in gasoline inventories.

USA crude output is expected to soon break 10 million bpd, challenging top producers Russian Federation and Saudi Arabia.

Gasoline stocks rose by 1.8 million barrels while distillate fuels stockpiles, which include diesel and heating oil, climbed by 609,000 barrels, the API data showed.

Official data from the Energy Information Administration will be released Thursday, amid forecasts for an oil-stock drop of around 3.6 million barrels, which would mark the ninth-straight fall.

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