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Oil prices stable after two-day decline, but rising USA output drags

Oil prices stable after two-day decline, but rising USA output drags

The report stated that oil futures ended lower, adding that the sell-off in crude oil futures started early in the month with oil prices pulled lower, as major US stock markets declined sharply and the dollar firmed. This comes as the Energy Information Administration shocked markets with big product draws as bears hang onto the fact that US oil production is rising and the one-week shock build in crude oil supply.

"There's no stopping us and OPEC's frustration levels are going to grow", said Philip Streible, senior market strategist at RJO Futures in Chicago, referring to efforts by major producers to curb output since past year.

West Texas Intermediate for April rose 25 cents to settle at $60.96 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange.

Futures in NY narrowed their decline after the American Petroleum Institute was said to have reported distillate inventories sank 4.26 million barrels and gasoline also fell. The WTI crude oil futures with delivery in April rose by 0.07 United States dollars, or 0.1%, to 61.03 USD per barrel.

Oil prices were up slightly on Monday morning in Asia as the number of USA rigs drilling for more oil production declined.

But US sanctions on Venezuela's oil sector, specifically on exports to the US, could accelerate that decline, Francisco Monaldi, the Latin American energy policy fellow at Rice University's Baker Institute for Public Policy, said in an interview with Platts.

Opec and several other non-Opec producers led by Russian Federation began cutting supply in January, 2017 to erase a global glut of crude that had built up since 2014.

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In its March Oil Market Report, OPEC revised up its forecast of non-OPEC supply for 2018 by 280,000 bpd, a major revision. In February, the IEA estimated non-OPEC growth in 2018 to be 1.8 million barrels a day.

It is estimated that the amount of crude oil in commercial storage in the U.S. increased by about five million barrels to 430.9 million barrels earlier this month. American gasoline inventories sank the most since September last week and product demand reached the highest since January, government data showed.

Oil markets remain volatile due to excess supply. OPEC trimmed its 2018 demand forecast for its own crude by 250,000 bpd to 32.61 million bpd, a fourth consecutive decline. Yes, we had a big build in crude supply, much bigger than the API reported, yet based on demand and the counter-seasonal draws that we have seen in recent weeks that should be welcomed.

Gasoline stocks fell by 6.3 million barrels last week, compared with analysts' expectations for a 1.2 million-barrel drop.

Prices were receiving support from healthy demand.

When the front-month contract is trading at a lower level than a later-dated contract, it suggests emerging concerns about growing supply, and reduced need to buy oil now.

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