Oil starts the week lower as markets focus on U.S. drilling activity | SapForex24

Oil prices declined during European morning hours on Monday, as prospects of rising U.S. production weighed on the market.
Crude oil for March delivery on the New York Mercantile Exchange shed 26 cents, or around 0.5%, to $52.96 a barrel by 3:50AM ET (08:50GMT).

Elsewhere, Brent oil for March delivery on the ICE Futures Exchange in London dipped 15 cents, or about 0.3%, to $55.34 a barrel.

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Oilfield services provider Baker Hughes said Friday that the number of rigs drilling for oil in the U.S. last week jumped by 29 to 551, the largest weekly increase since a recovery in the rig count began in June and the highest level in around 14 months.

The data raised concerns that the ongoing rebound in U.S. shale production could derail efforts by other major producers to rebalance global oil supply and demand.
OPEC and non-OPEC countries have made a strong start to lowering their oil output under the first such pact in more than a decade, energy ministers said on Sunday as producers look to reduce oversupply and support prices.

Ministers said that 1.5 million barrels a day of the roughly 1.8 million in cuts pledged by OPEC and non-OPEC countries have already been taken out of the market.

January 1 marked the official start of the deal agreed by OPEC and non-OPEC member countries such as Russia in November last year to reduce output by almost 1.8 million barrels per day to 32.5 million for the next six months.

The deal, if carried out as planned, should reduce global supply by about 2%.
Elsewhere on Nymex, gasoline futures for February ticked down 0.2 cents, or 0.2% to $1.563 a gallon, while February heating oil slipped 0.3 cents, or 0.2%, to $1.642 a gallon.

Natural gas futures for March delivery rose 2.0 cents, or 0.6%, to $3.231 per million British thermal units.



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