Oil prices down on US stockpiles surge

Crude oil prices18 September 2014, News Wires – Crude prices fell in Asia Thursday following an unexpected surge in US stockpiles and reports that the OPEC oil cartel is unlikely to slash production when it meets in November.

US benchmark West Texas Intermediate for October delivery dipped 63 cents to $93.79 while Brent crude for November eased 62 cents to $98.35 in afternoon trade.

Prices were under pressure “after the US Department of Energy reported an unexpected increase of US crude inventories by 3.7 million barrels instead of the market forecast for a 1.2 million decline,” said Singapore’s United Overseas Bank (UOB) in a market commentary.

Gasoline stocks dropped 1.6 million barrels in the week to September 12, the data showed.

UOB said oil prices also took a hit after “conflicting reports” about the plans of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) to cut its output in November due to a global supply glut and weak demand.

OPEC secretary general Abdullah El-Badri said Tuesday the cartel would cut output in November, which helped lift prices from a two-year low.

But a Dow Jones Newswires report Wednesday, citing unnamed OPEC delegates, said the organisation was unlikely to cut in November.


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