Crude prices fell on Tuesday as continued worries over a global oil glut and profit-taking on gains of nearly 3 per cent from the previous session beat down surging momentum from a possible meeting of oil producers.
Venezuelan Oil Minister Eulogio del Pino said on Monday that a meeting between OPEC and non-OPEC countries may take place “in the coming weeks” as the crisis-stricken South American nation sought support to prop up weak oil markets.
Some OPEC officials have said a global oil output freeze could be discussed at an already scheduled September meeting of the organisation, but non-OPEC Russia, the world’s largest oil producer, said it does not see any grounds for holding production at current levels.
Since the plunge in oil prices that began in mid-2014, Venezuela has repeatedly tried to broker deals to freeze production and reduce a supply glut, with limited success.
“Crude prices have been rising, so there may be no deal at OPEC,” Kaname Gokon at brokerage Okato Shoji in Tokyo said. “Russia seems to be keeping a distance from OPEC.”
London Brent crude for October delivery LCOc1 was down 30 cents at $45.09 a barrel by 0608 GMT (2:08 a.m. EDT), after settling up $1.12, or 2.5 per cent, on Monday. After falling nearly 15 per cent in July, Brent prices so far this month are up about 6 per cent.
NYMEX crude for September delivery CLc1 was down 28 cents at $42.74 a barrel, after closing up $1.22, or 2.9 per cent, on Monday. The U.S. benchmark lost about 14 per cent last month and is up about 2.5 percent in August.
Qatar’s Energy Minister and OPEC President Mohammad bin Saleh al-Sada said on Monday that the oil market was on the path to rebalancing despite the recent decline in global oil prices, adding that OPEC was in continuous talks to stabilise the market.
Market intelligence firm Genscape reported a build of more than 307,000 barrels at the Cushing, Oklahoma delivery hub for WTI futures in the week to August 5, traders said, even as analysts forecast in a Reuters poll a total U.S. crude inventory drop of 1 million barrels.