Oil prices have slipped as stock markets tumble due to weak global financial markets.

The reduction in prices comes ahead of the OPEC-led meeting in Vienna, Austria, where production cuts are expected to be announced to address excess supplies.

Brent crude oil futures, the international benchmark for crude prices, decreased 21 cents, or 0.3%, to reach $61.35 a barrel, while US West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures fell 28 cents, or 0.5%, to stand at $53.17, Reuters reported.

Traders suggest that unstable global financial markets affected oil prices.

“Traders suggest that unstable global financial markets affected oil prices.”

In a Global Outlook report published on 6 December, Barclays stated that ‘investors need to lower their expectations’ and that ‘2019 should be a period of lower returns and higher volatility’.

The bank added that the global economy is likely to experience a slowdown over the next several quarters. Global economic slowdown reduces fuel demand.

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A supply glut has also influenced oil markets, reducing prices by 30% since early October when both benchmarks reached four-year highs.

The producer cartel is expected to agree for a supply cut of up to 1.4 million barrels per day (Mbpd).

OPEC’s crude oil production has increased by 4.1% to 33.31Mbpd since mid-2018. Saudi Arabia, the de facto leader of the group, is a chief contributor to the growth in output.

Since the end of last year, output volumes from OPEC, Russia and the US rose by 3.3Mbpd to 56.38Mbpd.