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Oil prices edge up on potential producer action to prop up market
DATE:2016-8-15  FROM:ZN  AUTHOR:ZN  DOWN:334
 

By Henning Gloystein


SINGAPORE (Reuters) - Oil prices edged up early on Monday and have risen more than 10 percent since the start of the month as speculation intensifies about potential producer action to support prices in an oversupplied market.


International Brent crude oil futures were trading at $47.10 per barrel at 0018 GMT (08:18 p.m. EDT), up 13 cents from their last settlement, and over 10 percent above the last close in July.


U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures were at $44.65 a barrel, up 16 cents from their last close.


"Oil posted another ... gain as speculation of potential production freezes by OPEC picked up pace. Saudi Arabia signaled that it is prepared to discuss stabilizing the markets at informal OPEC discussions next month," ANZ bank said on Monday.


"This was despite another strong rise in drilling activity in the U.S. ... Baker Hughes data showed the number of rigs operating in the U.S. rose by 15 last week to 396," it added.


After falling sharply from over 1,600 in 2014, before the price rout started, to a low of just 316 in late May, the U.S. oil rig count has steadily risen since then as U.S. producers have adjusted to lower prices.


 


(Reporting by Henning Gloystein; Editing by Richard Pullin)


 

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