Oil price hits $67.14 amid OPEC cuts

Oil prices tick over near 2019 highs

Oil prices fall as U.S. crude output hits 12m bpd

U.S. crude oil inventories increased in the week ending February 15, the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) said in a report on Thursday.

For now, at least, the price dips have halted a rally that pushed crude to 2019 highs this week amid supply cuts led by the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC). Earlier this week, President Trump said that March 1, the deadline he had set for trade talks to reach a deal or start imposing new tariffs on Chinese imports, is "not a magical date", suggesting that the Administration could be flexible and not slap more tariffs if a deal is not reached by that date.

Prices, however, remained just below 2019 peaks reached earlier this week as United States crude oil production hit a record 12 million barrels per day (bpd) and its exports also surged.

Market participants had anticipated a jump in oil exports as shipments ramped up after fog disrupted loadings in the U.S. Gulf Coast a week earlier, according to Hart Energy, a local energy industry publisher.

-West Texas Intermediate futures, the USA oil standard, were up 1.3% at $57.78 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange.

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The agency also said that US crude stockpiles had built for a fifth straight week, climbing by 3.7 million barrels last week to 455 million barrels.

"Should risky assets receive some additional optimistic news out of the ongoing U.S".

The Saudi Arabia-led organisation agreed near the end of a year ago, alongside non-OPEC producers like Russian Federation to curtail oil production by 1.2 billion barrels a day in an effort to stop the commodities decline in price which had been in freefall throughout the latter half of 2018. OPEC and 10 allied producers outside the cartel, led by Russian Federation, agreed in late December to collectively hold back output by 1.2 million barrels day for the first half of 2019. America is the only country to reach 12 million bpd of production.

Analysts say US oil firms will export more oil to sell off surplus stocks.

Goldman Sachs said in a note that it expects OPEC output to average 31.1 million bpd in 2019, down from 31.9 million bpd.

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Surging U.S. crude oil production, is partly offsetting OPEC's cuts.

International Brent crude futures had yet to trade.

Crude inventories at Cushing, Oklahoma, the delivery site for USA crude futures, accounted for 3.4 million barrels of the rise.

That means much will depend on demand, which Goldman said it expected to grow by 1.4 million bpd this year.

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