Crude Oil Prices Gain In Asia As China Trade Data Supports

Crude Oil Prices Gain In Asia As China Trade Data Supports

Many analysts expect Brent to stay between $50 and $60 a barrel as long as global markets stay balanced.

The API reported a decline in U.S. gasoline inventories of about 1.58 million barrels.

Crude oil inventories fell 2.7 million barrels in the October 6 week to 462.2 million, 2.5 percent below the level a year ago, the Energy Information Administration (EIA) said in its weekly report Thursday. The drop was expected and is not price-supportive because of the end of the country's summer driving demand season.

US crude oil prices trim earlier losses after USA government data showed domestic crude stockpiles falling for the third week in a row; WTI now -0.9% at $50.84/bbl. Both benchmarks have risen more than 20 percent from their lows in June as world oil markets tightened. Distillate stocks fell by 1.5 million barrels, short of expectations for a drop of 2.2 million barrels. If the EIA stocks data points in a different direction, market sentiment could reverse later in the day.

OPEC and other producers including Russian Federation agreed previous year to reduce output by 1.8 million barrels per day (bpd) to prop up prices and the cuts, from January, have helped drain inventories.

The market was still under pressure, though, from a bearish outlook by the International Energy Agency, which lowered its forecast for oil demand for 2018.

"This means OPEC must deepen its production cuts to finish its job of bringing oil stocks back to the five-year average", Fritsch said. Production from USA shale basins, which comprises about 63% of the country's total crude production and is the main driver of growth, comes from thousands of independent producers who make operational decisions based on their economics.

Global oil supply rose by 90,000 bpd in September to 97.5m bpd due to higher production from non-Opec countries.

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