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WTI moves above US$32 a barrel

Thursday, February 25, 2016

Crude oil prices edged higher yesterday after the US government reported that crude oil storage hit another record high last week. However, the amount of storage was less than what some traders had expected. US government data showed crude stockpiles rose 3.5 million barrels last week to reach an all-time peak above 507 million barrels.

Some traders bet prices will head back lower after Saudi Oil Minister Ali al-Naimi, on Tuesday, ruled out production cuts. Al-Naimi told a meeting of energy leaders in Houston that production cuts aimed at supporting falling crude prices won’t work. 

He said the market should instead let some operators go out of business. Following his remarks, crude oil tumbled more than four per cent on Tuesday and was lower in early trading yesterday.

Word is that more major producers are likely to join a Saudi-Russia deal to freeze output at January’s highs. Iran, which opposes any move to limit its oil output until its crude exports reach pre-sanction levels, called the deal “laughable.”

West Texas Intermediate crude rose 26 cents to US$32.13 a barrel in New York, but is still well below the US$45 a barrel price on which T&T’s budget is pegged. Brent crude, which is used to price oils internationally, gained US$1.14, or 3.4 per cent, to US$34.41 a barrel.