Brent oil climbs above $60


The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries and some non-OPEC producers including Russian Federation have pledged to reduce production by around 1.8 million barrels per day (bpd) until the end of March 2018 to drain a global supply glut.

Oil prices slipped on Wednesday from four-week highs after a surprising increase in US crude inventories, even as top exporter Saudi Arabia reiterated its determination to end a three-year supply glut. Bullish U.S. government data that showed plunging gasoline and diesel stockpiles was tempered by the rise in oil production and a bump up in crude inventories. Analysts had expected a decrease of 2.6 million barrels. Early October production levels were impacted by Gulf of Mexico operations shut down ahead of Hurricane Nate.

Brent futures were up 13 cents, or 0.2 per cent, at US$58.57 a barrel by 12.45 pm EDT (1645 GMT), while US West Texas Intermediate crude was up 15 cents, or 0.3 per cent at US$52.33 per barrel.

The EIA data showed gasoline and distillate inventories both fell by more than 5 million barrels, and refinery utilization rates rose 3.3 percentage points. The deal was extended in May through March 2018.

OPEC is expected to discuss extending that agreement at a meeting in Vienna on November 30.

More news: Asia Cup Hockey: India beat Pakistan 3-1 to top Pool A
More news: Wells Fargo hit by surprise charge from pre-crisis mortgages
More news: Owners of 'Breaking Bad' house build fence to stop pizza

Southeast Asia's net crude oil imports will more than double to 5.5 million bpd by 2040 as the region adds new refining capacity to meet rising demand while regional oil output falls, according to the International Energy Agency (IEA).

The spread is an incentive for US producers and traders to export domestic oil to higher-priced markets and "that might be here to stay a little longer", Matt Sallee, who helps manage $16 billion in oil-related assets at Tortoise Capital Advisors LLC, said by telephone.

The strengthening dollar prices was mainly blamed.

He was referring to the planned Nov 30 meeting of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (Opec). Kurdish authorities on Wednesday offered to suspend their independence drive, but Baghdad said it would continue its offensive to retake Kurdish territory.

Disruptions to exports from Iraq, OPEC's second-largest producer, amid tensions between Baghdad and autonomous Iraqi Kurdistan have supported oil.