Oil prices rose on Wednesday after US data showing a hefty drawdown in gasoline stockpiles overshadowed crude inventories rising to their highest levels in more than a year. During the previous week, gasoline inventories fell by 1.8 million barrels.
In its latest monthly oil market report, the Paris-based IEA said production by OPEC kingpin Saudi Arabia dropped to its lowest level in two years in March after the cartel agreed to cuts with Russian Federation and other ex-Soviet states. USA crude production held at a record 12.2 million barrels a day.
US sanctions have reduced shipments of Iranian crude, while renewed fighting in Libya has sharply cut that country's production. Domestic fuel stockpiles tumbled more than analysts expected, while crude supplies expanded for a third straight week, according to the Energy Information Administration.
Oil prices fell on Thursday, with worries over slowing global growth and surging USA crude stockpiles weighing on the commodity.
According to the Energy Information Administration, the United States crude inventories increased 7 million barrels to 456.6 million barrels in the last week.
The combined supply cuts have helped to drive a 32 percent rally in crude prices this year to almost $72 a barrel, prompting pressure from U.S. President Donald Trump for OPEC to ease its market-supporting efforts.
On Monday, one of the key Russian officials to foster the pact with OPEC, Kirill Dmitriev, signalled that Russia wanted to raise oil output when it meets with OPEC in June because of improving market conditions and falling stockpiles.
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He also said Sudan's air space would be closed for 24 hours and border crossings shut until further notice. Sudan's main protest group rejected the military take over and called for demonstrations to continue.
The agency, which coordinates the energy policies of developed nations, saw oil stocks in industrialized countries fall in February by 21.7 million barrels, putting inventories 16 million barrels above their five-year average.
It said that US, Brazil, Russia, UK, Australia, Ghana, Sudan and South Sudan will be the main drivers of supply growth this year.
Crude oil prices rose 0.07 percent to Rs 4,454 per barrel on Wednesday as speculators created fresh positions amid positive cues from global markets.
Meanwhile, West Texas Intermediate gained 0.47 percent to Dollars 64.28, while Brent crude the global benchmark edged higher 0.28 percent to USD 70.81 per barrel.
Venezuela's oil output sank to a new long-term low last month due to U.S. sanctions and blackouts, with production plunging to 960,000 bpd in March, a drop of nearly 500,000 bpd from February. The report pointed to a slightly under-supplied market in 2019 if OPEC kept pumping at March's level.
Saudi Arabia's crude output fell 289,000 bpd in March to average 9.79 million bpd, according to an average of the six secondary sources that OPEC uses to gauge production.