Saudi official says March supplies to U.S. cut by 300,000 bpd
But OPEC supplies to Asia up more than 5 pct since January
Dennis Gartman says oil market glut, slump to be lasting (Updates prices)
Oil prices edged up on Friday, supported by a fall in Saudi exports to the United States, but overall markets remained under pressure on the back of a world market awash with fuel.
Benchmark Brent crude futures LCOc1 were at $50.69 per barrel at 0756 GMT, up 13 cents or 0.3 percent, from their last close.
U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures CLc1 were up 18 cents, or 0.4 percent, at $47.88 a barrel. Brent was heading for a weekly fall of about 2.1 percent, while WTI was off about 1.9 percent.
Traders said the increase came as Saudi Arabia said its crude exports to the United States would fall by around 300,000 barrels per day (bpd) between February and March. the United States, overseas oil suppliers like Saudi Arabia have to compete against rising shale drilling, which has pushed up U.S. oil production C-OUT-T-EIA by more than 8 percent since mid-2016 to just above 9.1 million bpd
To other major consumer regions, however, Saudi exports remain high despite an effort led by the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC), and supported by other producers including Russia, to cut output by 1.8 million bpd during the first half of the year.
“OPEC’s goal of drawing down inventories to normal levels is not going to be reached before their agreement expires on June 30,” said U.S. investment bank Jefferies in a note to clients.
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