Oil down as OPEC appears to keep output policy unchanged

*OPEC oil ministers attend attend the 169th meeting of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries, in Vienna, Austria.

*OPEC oil ministers attend attend the 169th meeting of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries, in Vienna, Austria.

02 June 2016, New York — Oil prices fell more than 1 percent on Thursday as the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries ended its meeting without any apparent change in its crude production policy.

Market participants had followed OPEC’s gathering in Vienna for signs of agreement on reviving the group’s collective output quota proposed by Saudi Arabia or the introduction of individual member country quotas suggested by Iran.

But a source said a post-meeting communique by OPEC did not mention any output ceiling.

An OPEC spokesman later said the group had confirmed its commitment to maintaining a stable oil market and that its next meeting will be on Nov. 30. Saudi Arabia’s Energy Minister described the meeting as “excellent.”

Brent crude oil futures were down 57 cents, or 1.2 percent, at $49.15 a barrel by 9:28 a.m. EDT, after touching an intraday low of $48.84.

U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures fell 78 cents, or 1.3 percent, to $48.23, after tumbling more than $1 earlier.

Some traders said crude prices were also pressured by the dollar’s rebound following comments by European Central Bank President Mario Draghi that were considered bearish for the euro.

Investors awaited weekly U.S. crude supply-demand due at 11:00 a.m. (1500 GMT) from the U.S. Energy Information Adminstration.

*Barani Krishnan, Amanda Cooper; Editing – David Evans & Meredith Mazzilli – Reuters

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