Arab Today, arab today oil prices dip before opec meeting
Last Updated : GMT 08:44:49
Arab Today, arab today
Arab Today, arab today

Oil prices dip before OPEC meeting

Arab Today, arab today

Arab Today, arab today Oil prices dip before OPEC meeting

London - AFP

Oil prices fell on Monday as traders took profits and geared up for this week\'s key OPEC meeting in Vienna. New York\'s main contract, light sweet crude for delivery in July, sank 74 cents to $99.48 per barrel. Brent North Sea crude for July weakened by 92 cents to $114.92 in late afternoon deals. The market had fallen sharply on Friday after publication of dismal US jobs figures for May but recovered by the end of the day for a modest loss. Disappointing US labour market data \"should increase the pressure on OPEC to raise production quotas\" at its meeting in Vienna on Wednesday, said analyst Carsten Fritsch at Commerzbank. \"The International Energy Agency again urged OPEC on Friday to increase its oil production. OPEC itself is divided on this issue,\" he noted. The 12-nation Organisation of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) will meet amid growing fears that high prices could further dent faltering world economic growth and energy demand. \"The debate about a possible quota increase should weigh on prices ahead of the OPEC meeting,\" Fritsch said. \"Speculative financial investors appear to be calculating more on the possibility of an increase of production quotas.\" The IEA wants OPEC to increase output and prevent another damaging spike in prices, with seasonal demand set to strengthen in the coming months as the northern hemisphere enters summer. So far this year, Brent oil prices have soared by about 21 percent, largely as a result of spreading unrest in the crude-producing Middle East and North Africa region -- and particularly in OPEC member Libya. At the same time, downbeat global economic data has suggested that the recovery is struggling and this complicates the outlook. The oil price faces market scepticism in particular over the ability of the economy in the United States, the biggest consumer in the world, to maintain its levels of demand. Such concerns were heightened last week with other economic data, notably in the housing and employment sectors as well as unusually high US oil stocks. The US economy generated a paltry 54,000 new jobs in May, one-quarter of the pace for the previous four months, sparking fresh worries it faces an extended period of slow growth and lower oil consumption. \"I would expect OPEC to leave quotas unchanged, rather than raise them, given the growing evidence that global demand is slowing,\" said Capital Economics analyst Julian Jessop. \"There is speculation in the market that they will be doing something to acknowledge the supply problems in Libya.\" The oil cartel, which pumps 40 percent of the world\'s crude, has left its production target at 24.84 million barrels per day since early 2009.

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