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Why is crude oil unable to recover?

10 May 2017

The market is becoming more confident that OPEC and other producers including Russian Federation, which pledged to cut output by nearly 1.8 million barrels per day (bpd) during the first half of the year will extend the deal to cover all of 2017.

West Texas Intermediate for June delivery rose as much as 76 cents to $46.98 a barrel before Al-Falih's comments on the New York Mercantile Exchange and traded at $46.37 at 7:40 a.m.in London.

Still, both Brent and WTI crude are holding below $50 a barrel because of brimming storage tanks, high drilling rates and ample production.

Brent crude oil, the Global benchmark, is steady around $49 a barrel, after dropping by as much as 10 per cent last week in a move seen as a sign traders have grown impatient with Opec's attempts to mop up a near three-year old surplus.

"Those claims do not withstand the reality check with the inventories staying stubbornly high and non-OPEC production rising strongly".

But Javier Blas, reporter for Bloomberg News, thinks OPEC and its allies' comparatively rapid change of stance from initially saying no extension to the end of 2017 would be needed to pushing for extensions into 2018 indicates that "the fight between OPEC, Russia, and the USA shale producers is intensifying, and so far it's America who is winning".

Earlier, Iran's Oil Minister Bijan Namdar Zanganeh said he believes that OPEC and non-OPEC producers are likely to extend output curbs to support price.

With just over a fortnight until the much anticipated OPEC meeting, Brent crude traded at around $49.23 a barrel on Tuesday, down 0.18 percent, while USA crude was around $46.33 a barrel, down 0.26 percent in early afternoon deals.

Khalid al-Falih Saudi energy minister attends the World Economic Forum (WEF) annual meeting in Davos, Switzerland January 19, 2017. This is part of the production cuts that the oil-producing kingdom had agreed to as a member of OPEC.

Meanwhile, investors will keep an eye out for a monthly report from the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Counties for further evidence that they are complying with their agreement to reduce output this year.

OPEC and other top producers will meet in Vienna on May 25 to discuss the possibility of cuts.

Reuters reported that OPEC and its non-OPEC partners were considering an extension to the current deal, which comprises an output cut of 1.8 million barrels per day (bpd), for nine months or more.