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Oil rises to $67 on cuts to Saudi, Venezuelan exports

15 March 2019

Crude oil prices have been trending higher today on the back of falling Venezuelan and Iranian production, squeezed by US sanctions, and also thanks to an update from Saudi Arabia that it plans to continue cutting its production deeper than it agreed on last December to support prices.

U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude oil futures CLc1 were at $56.92 per barrel at 0636 GMT, up 13 cents, or 0.2 percent, from their last settlement, Reuters said.

Brent crude futures were at $66.76 per barrel, up 18 cents, or 0.3 percent.

United States crude exports will surpass shipments from Russian Federation and almost catches up to Saudi Arabia by 2024, diversifying global supplies, the IEA added.

Oil prices have been receiving broad support this year from supply cuts by the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) and non-affiliated allies like Russian Federation aimed at tightening markets.

The resolution was to be subject to a review to either extend the cut by June, or discontinue after the monitoring team has reviewed the impact.

Markets have been further tightened by US sanctions against oil exports from OPEC members Iran and Venezuela.

"Downward revisions in global growth forecasts by OECD and European Central Bank have capped bullish gains", said Benjamin Lu of Singapore-based brokerage Phillip Futures. Brazil, Norway, the UAE and Guyana are also set to become the biggest sources of supply growth, but their total oil output will still fall behind that of the US.

"We will see what happens by April. But, barring this, I think we will just be kicking the can forward", Mr Falih said.

Saefong: The U.S. Energy Information Administration trimmed its forecasts for U.S. crude production for this year and next and lifted its 2019 forecasts for U.S. and global benchmark oil prices, according to its Short-term Energy Outlook report released Tuesday.

The United States surprised the market in November a year ago by allowing eight countries to keep importing Iranian oil - in part causing Brent crude futures, the global benchmark, to fall to near $50 a barrel in late December after surpassing $86 a barrel in October. This likely means the markets are at or near a balance point, which could lead to a rangebound trade.

Oil rises to $67 on cuts to Saudi, Venezuelan exports