U.S. tells world to steer clear of Iranian oil tankers

Workers at an onshore Iranian oil facility

Workers at an onshore Iranian oil facility

OPEC and its allies are set to meet in Vienna on December 6-7 to decide their oil supply policy and agree on a long-term mechanism to manage the market beyond 2018.

Futures fell 1.4 percent in NY on Tuesday.

A second delegate from the Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries asked whether discussions pointed to a return to supply cuts in 2019, said: "certainly not the other way around".

Iran is likely to ride out the storm from USA oil sanctions, suffering recession but no economic meltdown, thanks to rising crude prices and deepening divisions between the United States and other major powers, officials and analysts say.

Futures fell after the industry-funded American Petroleum Institute was said to report United States crude stockpiles expanded by 7.83 million barrels last week.

Oil's slide from a four-year high has been fueled by concerns that faltering emerging market economies and a U.S. The contract fell 1.6 percent to $60.67 on Thursday, and is headed for a 4 percent decline on the week - its fifth consecutive decrease.

Brent futures for January settlement edged up 9 cents to $70.74 a barrel on the London-based ICE Futures Europe exchange. The build was the fifth in as many weeks as reported by the API.

Oil rose as Opec and its allies were said to plan discussions about fresh production cuts next year, responding to recent increases in oil inventories amid surging United States supply. For Saudi Arabia - the world's biggest crude exporter - a reduction would mark the third time in recent years the kingdom has delivered a supply surge only to quickly reverse it.

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According to the data released by the EIA this morning, crude inventories in the USA increased by 5.8 million barrels in the week ended October 2, rising much more than forecasts.

The net long position in the six most important petroleum-linked futures and options contracts was cut by a further 73 million barrels in the week to October 30.

Crude output hit 11.6 million bpd, a weekly record, though weekly figures can be volatile.

"The market continues to shift from worrying about tightening supplies to acknowledging upside supply risks and weakening demand growth", analysts at JBC Energy wrote in a report.

The falls were partly driven by another rise in USA stocks.

But that will probably depend on what happens to the volume of Iranian imports.

Hinds sees a short-term rally in reaction to a supply deficit in the fourth quarter, but a more significant, sustained boost in oil prices, he says, will require longer-term supply disruption to markets.

The record United States production has been a moderating factor of oil prices, although oil got a bump on Thursday after record Chinese crude imports eased concerns that a slowdown in the world's No.2 economy could stoke an emerging fuel glut.

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