Global oil prices inch up

| Updated: October 26, 2017 11:12:02

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Oil prices inched up on Tuesday, getting support from a decline in oil exports from OPEC’s second-biggest producer Iraq and a projected extended fall in US commercial oil stocks.

London Brent crude for December delivery LCOc1 was up 5 cents at $57.42 a barrel by 0258 GMT after settling down 38 cents on Monday.

US crude for December delivery CLc1 was up 5 cents at $51.95.

Iraqi oil exports have fallen more than 200,000 barrels per day (bpd) so far this month, as shipments from both north and south of the country declined.

Crude oil exports through the Iraqi Kurdistan controlled-pipeline to the Turkish port of Ceyhan rose 13 per cent to 288,000 barrels per day (bpd) on Monday afternoon, but that was still less than half normal levels due to tensions in the region, a shipping source told Reuters.

Iraq could still boost southern exports in the rest of October and plans to do so. Iraqi Oil Minister Jabar al-Luaibi said on Saturday southern exports were increasing by 200,000 bpd to make up for the northern shortfall.

The drop in supplies from Iraq comes as the OPEC, Russia and other producers are cutting output by about 1.8 million bpd until March 2018 in an effort to drain a glut and support prices.

In September OPEC and non-OPEC countries achieved the highest compliance on planned cuts since the deal kicked off in January - at a rate of 120 percent - helping reduce oil stocks further at Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development nations, OPEC said.

Meanwhile US crude inventories likely fell by 2.5 million barrels last week, while gasoline and distillate stockpiles each probably fell by at least 1.5 million barrels, a preliminary Reuters poll showed on Monday ahead of data by the Industry group the American Petroleum Institute later in the day.

The US oil rig count fell seven to 736 in the week to Oct. 20, the lowest level since June, Baker Hughes data showed on Friday.

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