Oil prices have remained steady after Saudi Arabia said that the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) is moving towards a common position on output changes, which is expected to support the market.

Brent crude futures for November remained unchanged at $46.89 a barrel, while the US crude futures increased 5 cents to $44.75, Reuters reported.

Saudi Foreign Minister Adel al-Jubeir said that the cartel and non-OPEC oil producers were moving towards a consensus.

Members of OPEC are planning to meet in Algeria on 26-28 September to discuss the global output freeze proposal.

"I believe that there has been an increasing realisation that this is a collective effort."

The news agency quoted Al-Jubeir saying: "If you want to have an impact then all of us have to shoulder the responsibility, and I believe over the past five or six months, I believe that there has been an increasing realisation that this is a collective effort."

Two weeks ago, crude oil prices increased almost $10 a barrel through early August to above $51 on hopes that major oil producers may act to prop up prices.

Data released by the Energy Information Administration highlighted an increase in US crude stocks by 2.3 million barrels to 525.9 million barrels in the week ending 26 August.