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Crude Oil Futures Dip as Focus Shifts to OPEC Monthly Report, U.S. Stockpile Data

© Reuters.  Crude oil futures edge lower© Reuters. Crude oil futures edge lower

Investing.com – Crude oil prices edged lower on Tuesday, as investors looked ahead to the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries’ monthly report to assess global supply and demand levels.

The data will give traders a better picture of whether a global rebalancing is taking place in the oil market.

Market players will also focus on weekly data from the U.S. on stockpiles of crude and refined products to weigh what the impact of recent storm activity was on supply and demand.

Industry group the American Petroleum Institute is due to release its weekly report at 4:30PM ET (2030GMT).

Official data from the Energy Information Administration will be released Wednesday, amid forecasts for an oil-stock gain of around 2.3 million barrels.

U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures shed 5 cents, or around 0.1%, to $48.02 a barrel by 3:15AM ET (0715GMT). The U.S. benchmark advanced 59 cents, or 1.2%, on Monday.

Meanwhile, Brent crude futures, the benchmark for oil prices outside the U.S., dipped 7 cents to $53.77 a barrel. The global benchmark inched up by 6 cents, or 0.1%, in the prior session.

Monday’s gains came as Hurricane Irma struck the U.S. southeast with less force than once feared, easing worries that energy demand would be hit hard.

Prices received additional support amid reports that Saudi Arabia’s oil minister discussed possibly extending a pact to cut global oil supplies beyond March 2018 with his Venezuelan and Kazakh counterparts.

OPEC and other producers, including Russia, have agreed to reduce output by about 1.8 million barrels per day until next March in a bid to reduce global oil inventories and support oil prices.

A further extension for at least three more months beyond March is now being discussed before OPEC meets again in November.

Elsewhere, gasoline futures declined 0.4 cents, or 0.3%, to $1.632 a gallon, while natural gas futures added 1.2 cents, or 0.4%, to $2.962 per million British thermal units.

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