Oil slips from $70 as supplies tighten

The world’s most expensive oil

Global Look Press

Brent crude futures, used in the pricing of more than half the world's oil, rose as much as 1.2 percent to the highest since December 4, 2014.

Oil prices are now at levels at which US production could substantially increase.

Oil's rally shows that the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries and its allies are succeeding in clearing the glut triggered by the growth of USA shale oil.

He also said OPEC isn't concerned about a potential supply disruption shock due to crude output declines in Venezuela and political unrest in Iran.

"Pretty much all of the fundamental boxes are supportive of the current rally and a bit more", said Paul Horsnell, head of commodities research at Standard Chartered Plc in London.

Brent crude futures traded 55 cents lower at $68.71 a barrel at 1253 GMT.

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With the climb in crude, there are growing signs that OPEC could be falling into a trap it had sought to avoid.

In addition to the OPEC and non-OPEC production cuts of 1.8 million barrels per day (bpd) that are due to last until the end of 2018, oil prices have found support from eight consecutive weeks of USA crude inventory drops. "It's not completely unexpected, given the price momentum".

USA shale is expected to continue to counteract OPEC production cuts this year.

The decision to cut its oil supply, which was originally agreed in November 2016, was in response to a fall in global demand following a huge boom in USA shale production and OPEC's subsequent decision to flood the market in mid-2014.

Suhail Mohamed Faraj al-Mazrouei, energy minister for the UAE, told CNBC at the 9th Gulf Intelligence UAE Energy Forum in Abu Dhabi that "there is of course a positive market sentiment that we are seeing today, and it is expected.the market is balancing and this is what we've been saying: the issue was the timing and how long it would take".

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