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13 March 2018, 12:06 | Joann Bryant
US shale Bakersfield
Oil prices fell on Monday on expectations that USA output will rise this year, erasing earlier gains buoyed by lower weekly US rig counts and falling US unemployment.
Oil prices fell on Tuesday, extending losses from the previous session, as the inexorable rise in US crude output weighed on markets.
Both WTI and Brent as recently as Thursday had marked their lowest settlements since mid-February.
"The big take away is the implied annual rate of change", James Williams, energy economist at WTRG Economics, told MarketWatch.
WTI settled down 68 cents to $61.36 per barrel while Brent fell 50 cents to $64.99 per barrel.
Gene McGillian, director of market research at Tradition Energy, pointed out that "The market continues to flip back and forth on the idea that increased global demand and a production cut is going to support prices. but USA production, and North American production levels in general, is going to negate a lot of the impact of that".
Crude oil prices fell Monday ahead of closely watched USA inflation data that may set the stage for interest rate hikes.
The rising US output comes largely on the back of onshore shale oil production. The dollar tends to have an inverse relationship with oil prices, as a weaker greenback makes dollar-denominated commodities cheaper for holders of other currencies. The news is not likely to change the outlook for rising USA production which is now up to 10.37 million barrels per day (bpd). At stake is OPEC's production limits, which are among factors helping the oil market's monthslong recovery. It was the first such decline in seven weeks. Helping the dip, hedge funds and money managers cut their bullish wagers on US crude oil for the first time in three weeks, data showed on Friday.
"Permian and Bakken shale basins still saw active oil rigs rising by 2 and 3 last week, respectively, and are likely to keep United States oil production on increasing trend", ING said.
Nymex reformulated gasoline blendstock-the benchmark gasoline contract-fell 0.6% to $1.89 a gallon.
April natural gas bucked the downtrend among its energy peers, settling up 1.7% at $2.778 per million British thermal units, with forecasts for more cold weather in the eastern US boosting expectations for heating demand.
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