Lower oil prices now

Devin Lawrence
September 24, 2018

President Donald Trump on Thursday issued a fresh call on the OPEC oil cartel to lower crude prices, saying the United States was providing Middle Eastern energy giants with security. US West Texas Intermediate crude for October delivery fell 16 cents to $70.16 a barrel.

Futures prices for WTI crude, the USA benchmark, dipped slightly following the tweet and were lower by 0.2% on the day.

According to data from the American Petroleum Institute, the crude oil inventories in the United States for the week of September 14 have gone up by 1.2 million barrels to a total of 397.1 million barrels.

Varga further expanded by saying that the current trade war between the USA and other countries should have impacted the price of oil. He stressed that any decision on a new production agreement by OPEC's Joint Ministerial Monitoring Committee that meets on Sunday would be "void" and "invalid". The strategy worked. USA oil prices have almost tripled since crashing to $26 a barrel in early 2016.

OPEC and its allies seem poised for another contentious meeting in Algeria this weekend as Iran - wounded by US sanctions - cries betrayal and threatens to veto decisions.

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The change in the kingdom's view on prices coincided with some intense oil diplomacy.

Crude inventories fell by 2.1 million barrels, the EIA data showed, compared with expectations for a decrease of 2.7 million barrels. Brent crude was up 3 cents at $79.06 a barrel.

The recent surge in USA oil production, led by the Permian Basin of West Texas, has allowed the energy industry to quickly recover from a deep slump that killed thousands of jobs and caused dozens of bankruptcies.

Crude oil storage tanks are seen from above at the Cushing oil hub, in Cushing, Oklahoma, March 24, 2016. That's because Saudi Arabia and Russian Federation - the group's two largest producers - have already moved beyond the 2016 deal to cut output, and U.S. President Donald Trump is pushing them to do even more. Helped by hydraulic fracturing and horizontal drilling, production began increasing before a large drop in prices in mid-2014 forced producers to scale back.

The weekend gathering will discuss how to share the previously agreed output increases and examine whether the market needs more oil to offset the loss of Iranian supply as well as a decline in Venezuelan output, the sources said.

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