Prime News: Oil Prices Steady as Markets Tighten Amid OPEC Production Deal, Iran Sanctions

Oil prices stood near November 2014 highs as ongoing production cuts by OPEC and impending U.S. sanctions against Iran tightened the market amid strong appetite for oil.

Brent crude futures traded at $78.37 per barrel, 14 cents up from their last settlement and close to a three-and-a-half year peak price of $78.53 per barrel hit in the prior session.

U.S. WTI crude futures stood at $71.09 per barrel, 13 cents higher from their last close and also near their November 2014 high of $71.89 per barrel reached in the prior week.

Markets have generally tightened as OPEC, headed by Saudi Arabia, had been limiting supplies since 2017 in order to drive up oil prices.

With reimposed U.S. sanctions looming against OPEC-member Iran and strong oil demand, analysts said crude prices were well supported.

The tightening oil market has all but diminished a global supply glut which has weighed down crude prices between late 2014 and early 2017.

OPEC data released on Friday indicated that oil stockpiles in OECD industrialized nations declined to 9 million barrels higher than the five-year average, falling 340 million barrels above the average in January 2017.

The material has been provided by InstaForex Company –

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