Oil is heading for a second weekly loss as investors turn their attention to expanding U.S. oil production and gasoline stockpiles after OPEC last month agreed to extend supply cuts.
Futures in New York were little changed, down 3 percent for the week. U.S. crude output climbed to a record last week, while motor fuel inventories rose more than double analysts’ forecasts, according to government data Wednesday. Kuwait sees the oil market re-balancing by the third quarter of 2018, state-run Kuna news agency said, citing the Kuwaiti oil minister.
Oil has averaged about $54 a barrel this quarter, the highest in more than two years as the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries and its allies agreed to extend output curbs until the end of 2018. Chevron Corp. will ramp up investment in the U.S. Permian Basin and other shale fields next year while reducing spending elsewhere, according to a statement Thursday.
West Texas Intermediate for January delivery was at $56.61 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange, down 8 cents, at 9:31 a.m. in Hong Kong. Total volume traded was about 69 percent below the 100-day average. Prices gained 73 cents, or 1.3 percent, to $56.69 on Thursday.
Brent for February settlement lost 13 cents to $62.07 a barrel on the London-based ICE Futures Europe exchange after climbing 1.6 percent on Thursday. Prices are down 2.6 percent this week. The global benchmark traded at apremium of $5.41 to February WTI.