Oil prices remain stable after losses due to oversupply concerns

17 December 2018 (Last Updated December 18th, 2018 04:08)

Oil prices have remained stable following a 2% fall in the previous session due to concerns of oversupply.

Oil prices remain stable after losses due to oversupply concerns
Saudi Arabia-led OPEC along with Russia will restrict oil supplies from January next year to rebalance the market. Credit: TheConduqtor.

Oil prices have remained stable following a 2% fall in the previous session due to concerns of oversupply.

Brent crude oil futures were trading at $60.31 per barrel gaining three cents from their last close, while the US West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures stood at $51.27 per barrel, up by seven cents, reported Reuters.

Growth in shale output in the US continues to weigh on oil prices, while some analysts doubt that the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) led supply cuts would suffice to rebalance markets.

From January next year, Saudi Arabia-led OPEC along with Russia agreed to restrict oil supplies in a bid to rebalance the market.

The restrictions will be reviewed again by the participants in April next year.

“I don’t believe OPEC cuts will work this time around with Qatar going out and Iran refusing to cut, while there’s a big question mark when Russia will go to its agreed level.”

Oil consultancy Trifecta director Sukrit Vijayakar was quoted by the news agency as saying: “I don’t believe OPEC cuts will work this time around with Qatar going out and Iran refusing to cut, while there’s a big question mark when Russia will go to its agreed level.”

Alongside oversupply concerns, the oil market weakened over dampened growth prospects of major markets including Europe and China.

Last month, oil refinery throughput in China dropped indicating a dip in demand. Additionally, the rate of industrial output in the country slowed down last month further suggesting sluggish economic growth.

However, oil prices gained support over reports on drop of oil rig count in the US.

According to Baker Hughes energy services firm, the number of US rigs dropped by four to settle at 873 in the week ending 14 December.