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August 16, 2018

Oil prices increase as global oil market remains steady

Oil prices have increased as global markets steadied, regaining some of the previous losses of 2%.

Oil prices have increased as the global oil market steadied, regaining some of the previous losses of 2%.

Brent crude oil futures rose 13 cents to trade at $70.89 a barrel, while the US crude futures increased 8 cents to $65.09, Reuters reported.

An increase in US inventories intensified concerns over the outlook for fuel demand.

Several rounds of tit-for-tat trade tariffs were implemented by China and the US, which threatened further duties on exports, knocking economic growth across the globe.

Saxo Bank commodities strategist Ole Hansen said: “The growth story is now more or less a US growth story. The rest of the world isn’t playing along any longer.

"The growth story is now more or less a US growth story. The rest of the world isn’t playing along any longer."

“It also really reflects how the theme in the commodities market has so quickly changed from being one where the worry was about supply, with Iran sanctions for oil or Chilean (miner) strikes for copper, and now the focus is on demand.”

On the global oil market supply front, US data highlighted an increase in crude output by 100,000 barrels per day (bpd) to 10.9 million bpd in the week ending 10 August and inventories rose by 6.8 million barrels.

Supplies in the US increased and markets in Asia are showing signs of slowdown due to trade disputes and a stronger dollar that drag on the economies of some largest oil buyers worldwide.

Brent crude gained some support with looming US sanctions against Iran’s oil exports that are expected to begin from November this year.

India, South Korea and Japan, which are the biggest customers of Iran, are already scaling back orders.

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