Barkindo: OPEC, non-OPEC nation committed to restore market stability

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The price increases on Thursday followed a more than 3.5% drop in both crude benchmarks during the previous session after the EIA reported surging petrol inventories as well as another rise in U.S. crude oil production to 9.25-million barrels a day, up nearly 10% since mid-2016.

US crude oil production has climbed to 9.24 million barrels per day (bpd), according to the latest Energy Information Administration data, making it the world's third-largest producer after Russian Federation and Saudi Arabia.

US crude inventories, however, fell by 1.0 million barrels last week to 532.3 million barrels, said the EIA.

US West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures were also down 4 cents at $52.61 a barrel.

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Traders opined that oil prices gained support as OPEC's secretary general assured that the oil cartel is committed to rebalance market stability by bringing down crude stocks down across the globe to the industry's five-year average.

According to data the single countries report to the Joint Organizations Data Initiative (JODI), Saudi Arabia's crude oil exports in February stood at 6.957 million barrels per day, the lowest volumes shipped in a month since May 2015 when exports were 6.935 million bpd.

"The soft U.S. CPI (consumer price index) on Friday will ease yields further, also undermining the reflationist markets such as oil and precious metals", he said.

But U.S. stockpiles-and shale production-have cast doubt on whether the production cuts were enough. WTI futures settled at $52.41 a barrel, down 24 cents. U.S.

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Brent for June settlement dropped as much as 58 cents, or 1 percent, to $55.31 a barrel on the London-based ICE Futures Europe exchange. The American Petroleum Institute late Tuesday reported a decline of 840,000 barrels, while analysts polled by S&P Global Platts forecast a fall of 50,000 barrels.

Additionally, Iran added fuel to hopes that OPEC and non-OPEC oil producers could extend their output cuts beyond the initial six-month agreement.

Oil prices fell in thin trade on Tuesday after the Easter holiday break shut many markets for as long as four days and as a USA government report indicated rising production.

The increased oil stockpiles that are driving the cost per barrel down that will lead to higher prices at the pump come amid OPEC's fight to reduced the global crude stockpile.

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