Brent’s value decreased today after the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) agreed on Wednesday to keep its production target unchanged at 30mmbpd for the first half of 2014.
Brent crude dropped by 18 cents to $111.70 a barrel, while US crude increased by 19 cents to settle at $97.39 a barrel, reported Reuters.
Brent’s price fell on oversupply concerns, after the OPEC decided to keep its production ceiling unchanged, despite fears about a supply glut in 2014.
In coming months production is expected to increase, as Iraq and Iran look to export more crude after sizeable falls in recent years, while Libyan supplies may also recover – which could add more pressure.
Qatar Energy Minister Mohammed al-Sada said on Wednesday that the price of oil is acceptable and there will be some additional oil coming to the market from the OPEC and outside the oil producing block.
Saudi Arabia and other OPEC members said the benchmark crude oil prices – currently averaging $100 a barrel – provide acceptable income for producers without weighing too heavily on consumers.
Bijan Namdar Zanganeh, oil minister for Iran, commented that after sanctions were lifted it would increase production from 2.7 million barrels a day to the former level of four million barrels a day.
But the US’s crude prices increased by more than a dollar overnight, after the country’s crude stockpiles dropped for the first time in 11 weeks.
Energy Information Administration (EIA) data revealed that crude stocks fell by 5.6 million barrels in the week to 29 November, reducing around one-sixth of the 36 million barrels that had built up during the previous ten weeks.
Image: OPEC’s HQ building in Vienna, Austria. Photo courtesy of Wikipedia / Priwo.