WTI settles below $65 after EIA shows surprise build in crude inventories

WTI settles below $65 after EIA shows surprise build in crude inventories

OPEC's No. 3 producer Iran is also subject to United States sanctions, including curbs on its oil trade, after President Donald Trump quit an worldwide accord on the Islamic Republic's nuclear program last month.

The US requested Saudi Arabia to keep oil prices and supply stable after the imposition of sanctions on Iran.

Riyadh, Tehran's arch rival, has always been a close Washington ally, but direct pressure on a member of Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) over oil policies is rare.

U.S. oil prices edged up in early Asian trade on Wednesday to move away from lows hit in the previous session, buoyed after industry data showed a decline in USA crude inventories.

The group and Russian Federation are due to meet at its headquarters in Vienna on June 22 to discuss production policy."The June 22 OPEC meeting will now likely become the most important factor influencing (the) crude price", Jefferies said.

Crude oil storage tanks are seen from above at the Cushing oil hub in Cushing, Oklahoma, U.S., March 24, 2016.

Earlier this week, Bloomberg reported that the United States had quietly asked Saudi Arabia and several other OPEC nations to raise oil production by some 1 million bpd.

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Venezuela's supply trouble comes amid voluntary production cuts by OPEC which have been in place since 2017 in order to tighten the market and prop up prices.

Headlines on OPEC members' plans for the meeting later this month will lead to volatile market swings, said Tariq Zahir, managing member of Tyche Capital Advisors in NY. When the USA announced it would reimpose sanctions on Iran in November, Ice Brent futures rose by $2.36/bl on the day.

"You need to work with your partners in dealing with any potential effect on supply", that OPEC source said.

The US imported 748,000 bpd from Saudi Arabia in March 2018, having reached a post-1970s peak of more than 2 million bpd during 2003, according to figures from the US Energy Information Administration.

The 14 OPEC members account for 1.21 trillion of the world's total proved reserves of 1.48 trillion barrels of crude oil.

Crude oil prices moved lower and are trading sideways forming a bear flag pattern which is a pause that refreshes lower.

OPEC and Russian Federation will meet on June 22/23 to decide whether to increase production. Oil prices lost considerable ground in a US-Chinese tit-for-tat on tariffs in April and now the focus is on Europe. The increase shows that lack of supply that is coming from OPEC crude relative to supply from USA production.

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