OIL PRICES: ABOVE $48 ANEW
Brent crude futures LCOc1, the international benchmark for oil prices, were down 7 cents, or 0.1 percent, at $48.35 per barrel at 0443 GMT (12:43 a.m. ET), but up 3.5 percent for the week.
U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures CLc1 were at $45.97 per barrel, down 11 cents, or 0.2 percent, but up around 4 percent over the week.
Crude prices are around levels in late November last year, when a group of oil producers including Russia and Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) pledged to withhold around 1.8 million barrels per day (bpd) of output between January this year and March 2018 to tighten the market.
"OPEC compliance with production cuts slipped to 98 percent in June, but more importantly output from exempt (from cutting)members Libya and Nigeria is currently about 700,000 bpd higher than at the time of the November OPEC agreement, offsetting about 60 percent of the OPEC cuts. The growth in U.S. production over the same time negates the remainder," U.S. investment bank Jefferies said.
U.S. oil production has risen by more than 10 percent over the past year to 9.4 million bpd.
Oil analysts at research and brokerage firm Sanford C. Bernstein said that global oil stocks remain high.
"For the first half of 2017, OECD inventories are likely to finish higher, rather than lower ... The most plausible explanation is that OPEC compliance has been not as high as has been suggested," Bernstein said.
"OPEC will have to cut deeper and for longer if it wants to eliminate the inventory overhang and prices to rise," Bernstein said.
It added that the upside for oil prices looked limited even if OPEC took more action due to high U.S. shale production.
Goldman Sachs said that the crude oil price outlook remained weak, largely due to rising cost efficiency from U.S. shale drillers.
"We see potential for shale to break even at $45 ... (and) we see $45-$55 per barrel annual WTI range," the U.S. investment bank said.
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AN - China National Offshore Oil Corp. (CNOOC) is willing to invest $3 billion in its existing oil and gas operation in Nigeria, the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) said on Sunday following a meeting with the Chinese in Abuja.
REUTERS - Production at Libya’s giant Sharara oil field was expected to fall by at least 160,000 barrels per day (bpd) on Saturday after two staff were abducted in an attack by an unknown group, the National Oil Corporation (NOC) said.
IMF - Output grew by 3.8 percent in 2017, underpinned by a resilient non-hydrocarbon sector, with robust implementation of GCC-funded projects as well as strong activity in the financial, hospitality, and education sectors. The banking system remains stable with large capital buffers. Growth is projected to decelerate over the medium term.
IMF - Higher oil prices and short-term portfolio inflows have provided relief from external and fiscal pressures but the recovery remains challenging. Inflation declined to its lowest level in more than two years. Real GDP expanded by 2 percent in the first quarter of 2018 compared to the first quarter of last year. However, activity in the non-oil non-agricultural sector remains weak as lower purchasing power weighs on consumer demand and as credit risk continues to limit bank lending.