Crude oil futures settled higher on Thursday with minimal gains for the shortened week, as traders weighed near-term crude supply and demand prospects.
At the back of US-sanctions, the production of Crude-oil in Venezuela has fallen extensively. A report showed that crude oil exports from Saudi Arabia fell by 2,77,000 barrels a day to below 7-mln barrels per day in February. Further it reported that a fall in shipments from Saudi Arabia added support. Meanwhile, oil trading in the US & UK was closed for Good Friday.
For the week, Benchmark crude oil futures for May surged 0.4% to settle at USD64 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange, while June Brent crude gained 0.5% to settle at USD71.97 a barrel on London’s Intercontinental Exchange.
However, CrudeOil prices in the commodity market are expected to be strong in the near future, as the US is preparing more sanctions on the country soon. The United States are putting pressure on major importers of India & China not to buy oil from Venezuela and Iran.
Also, there is a forecast that Iran may be more likely to fall production after May 2. Militant actions in Libya are also raising concerns in the oil market. All of these factors are accompanied by the chances that there is bullish reflection on oil futures and Brent crude price goes up further.