Oil prices edged up on Friday as turmoil in Venezuela increased the chances of tighter global supply if the U.S. makes good on signals that it could impose sanctions on Venezuelan exports.
However, fresh data on surging U.S. fuel stocks and worries about U.S.-China trade talks weighed on prices.
Brent crude oil futures were at 61.17 dollars a barrel at 0955 GMT, up 8 cents, or 0.13 per cent.
Earlier on Friday, the international benchmark crude rose as high as 61.92 dollars.
Brent has shed about 2.4 per cent since the start of trade on Monday and is on track to post its first week of losses in four weeks.
U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures were at 53.34 dollars per barrel, up 21 cents, or 0.4 per cent.
Amid violent street protests, Venezuela’s opposition Leader, Juan Guaido, declared himself interim president, winning recognition from Washington and parts of Latin America.
Nicolas Maduro, the country’s Leader since 2013, responded by breaking relations with the U.S.
“The oil market is partially pricing in the risk to Venezuela’s crude production, which has been plummeting in recent years,” Vandana Hari of Vanda Insights said.
RBC Europe predicted that sanctions could nearly double projected output shortfalls from the troubled exporter.
“Venezuelan production will decline by an additional 300,000-500,000 barrels per day (bpd) this year but such punitive measures could expand that outage by several hundred thousand barrels.’’
Global oil markets are still well supplied, however, thanks in part to surging output in the U.S.
Record U.S. production would likely offset any short-term disruptions to Venezuelan supply due to possible U.S. sanctions, Britain’s Barclays said in a note.
The bank cut its 2019 average Brent forecast to 70 dollars a barrel, from 72 dollars previously.
The output surge has swollen U.S. fuel stocks, and crude inventories rose by eight million barrels earlier, according to official data released on Thursday.
Earnings lift Wall Street, but demand may start to stutter because of a global economic slowdown, which is likely to dent fuel consumption.
A trade dispute between the U.S., China and tightening financial conditions around the world have hurt manufacturing activities in most economies and dragged China’s growth in 2018 to the weakest in nearly 30 years.
Okowa Hails Speaker Oborevwori On Birthday
Delta State Governor, Senator Ifeanyi Okowa has felicitated with the Speaker of the Delta State House of Assembly, Rt. Hon....
NNPC To resume Oil Search In Chad Basin – Baru
The Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) says it will resume crude oil search in the Chad basin immediately it gets...
EFCC Arrests 9 Suspected Internet Fraudsters In Ibadan
The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, Ibadan zonal office, on Wednesday arrested nine suspected internet fraudsters. The suspects, ranging...
FG Flags-off Reconstruction Of N3.6bn Lagos-Badagry Expressway
The Federal Government, Monday, flagged off reconstruction works on Okokomaiko-Agbara end of the Lagos-Badagry Expressway, disclosing that N3.6 billion has...
Gotv Boxing 19: Reigning WABU Champion “Babyface’’ Gets New Opponent As Lartey Withdraws
Ghanaian welterweight boxer Eden Biki will now take on reigning West African Boxing Union (WABU) champion Rilwan “Babyface” Babatunde of...
110 Women Die Daily In Nigeria – UNFPA
The United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) has said that no fewer than 110 women die daily in Nigeria as a...
Van Gogh ‘Suicide Gun’ Sold At Auction
The gun which Vincent van Gogh may have used to kill himself has sold for a €162,500 (£144,000; $182,000) –...
NEWS8 hours ago
Borno Gov. Appoints SSG, COS, Others
FEATURES23 hours ago
NASS Inauguration: How Clerk Averted Constitutional Crisis
EDUCATION14 hours ago
President Buhari’s Assent To Poly Act Bill, A Laudable Achievement – ASUP
NEWS13 hours ago
FG Saves N273.8bn From Implementation Of IPPIS In MDAs
NEWS24 hours ago
Zamfara Gov Launches Elders’ Forum To Tackle Challenges
POLITICS10 hours ago
Anti-Party Activities: Ex-Gov Yari Rejects APC’s Committee Report
NEWS23 hours ago
Lack Of Will To Perform Task Causes Operational Setbacks – Buratai
NEWS24 hours ago
67-yr-old Woman Hacks First Bank Account, Steals N16.2m