24 October 2016

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Reuters: Oil prices fall on doubts producers can agree output restraint

Oil prices fell away from 5-week highs early on Wednesday, as analysts doubted possible producer talks to rein in ballooning oversupply would be successful, according to Reuters.


Brent crude futures LCOc1 were trading at $48.92 per barrel at 0158 GMT, down 31 cents from their last settlement, Reuters wrote

Despite the dip, prices are still up over 17% since early August and remain not far off a five-week high of $49.36 a barrel reached the previous day.

U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude CLc1 was at $46.38 per barrel, down 20 cents from its last close, but still up 18% from early August, according to the report.

Traders said that profit-taking following recent rallies was weighing on prices, and there were also doubts that producer talks to rein in oversupply would be successful.

The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) will probably revive talks on freezing oil output levels when it meets non-OPEC nations next month, with sources citing Saudi Arabia's wish for higher prices, Reuters wrote.

"The rumor mill around producer cooperation has resumed, spurred by recent comments from Saudi Arabia's oil minister, allowing oil prices to gain," said French bank BNP Paribas.

The last time OPEC and other major producers like Russia met, in April, to discuss ways of reducing the production overhang, talks failed due to disagreement mainly between OPEC rivals Saudi Arabia and Iran.

An OPEC meeting in June also failed to reach an agreement to limit production, and the group's output has since reached new records.

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