Oil prices edge up on hopes for U.S.-China trade breakthrough


International Brent crude oil futures were down 71 cents, or 1.1 percent, at $61.39 a barrel. OPEC countries demonstrated an unequal level of oil production cuts as of the end of January and reduction rates need to be expedited, OPEC Secretary General Mohammad Barkindo said on Tuesday in a statement released by the Secretariat's press service.

"It's a little bit on the bearish side", Saal said.

US crude stockpiles were forecast to have risen last week for a fourth straight week, ahead of data from the American Petroleum Institute (API), an industry group, at 4:30 p.m. EST (2130 GMT). "China trade talks, ignoring the risks now in place from the loss of Venezuelan barrels", US bank J.P. Morgan said in a weekly note.

The cartel has joined forces with 10 non-member nations including Russian Federation to trim output to avoid a repeat of the 2014 crash when prices dove to below $30 a barrel - down from over $100 - due to a glut in supplies and weakening global demand.

Today the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) announced that they had decreased crude output by just under 800,000 barrels a day in January.

United States restrictions on Venezuela's energy sector have crippled exports and threaten to remove some 330,000 bpd in supply from the market this year, according to Goldman Sachs.

"This report is bearish", said Phil Flynn an oil analyst at Price Futures Group in Chicago.

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Oil has advanced around 18% this year as the OPEC+ coalition cuts production, although the rally has sputtered this month amid record American shale output and rising angst over the trade war.

Saudi Arabia plans to reduce its oil exports to 6.9 million barrels per day (bpd) in March, down from 8.2 million bpd a year ago, the country's energy minister, Khalid Al-Falih, announced yesterday. Refining margins for gasoline have collapsed.

Oil prices have struggled to rise amidst an oversupplied market.

The country's average heavy crude price was also reported to be $56.29 since beginning of 2019 up to the report's publishing day.

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Numerous region's refineries are new and are optimized to process heavy and sour crudes. Over the course of his career, he has worked with some of the world's leading forex brokerages and research departments including Global Forex Trading, FX Solutions and Trading Advantage. "But the news about Saudi Arabia is pretty significant, so the market is reacting to that more so than anything else right now". Based in New York, Ed is a regular guest on several major financial television networks including BNN, CNBC, Fox Business, and Bloomberg.