Oil prices rebound on reported Russian moves
Oil prices rebounded slightly Friday after falling this week, helped by reports that Russia is considering production cuts, analysts said.
US benchmark West Texas Intermediate for delivery in November won 58 cents to $46.96 a barrel compared with Thursday's close.
Brent North Sea crude for December delivery gained 46 cents to stand at $50.19 a barrel in London afternoon deals.
"Russia expressed a willingness to talk with OPEC countries about possible production cuts at a meeting next week," said Commerzbank analyst Carsten Fritsch.
Bloomberg News quoted Russian Energy Minister Alexander Novak as saying in Kazakhstan on Thursday that Russia was prepared to discuss price ranges and output cuts when it meets with the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries in Vienna on Wednesday.
Russia is among the world's top oil producers alongside OPEC kingpin Saudi Arabia and the United States.
"We believe the chances of this yielding any concrete results are very slight," noted Fritsch.
Oil prices fell for the fourth straight day Thursday as the United States reported an increase in already high crude stockpiles, adding to concerns about the global supply glut.
The US Department of Energy surprised the market in a report showing that the country's commercial crude inventories jumped by 7.6 million barrels last week, nearly three times as much as experts had predicted.
"News that Russia is not ruling out possible production cuts offset the increase in US stockpiles," said Bernard Aw, market strategist at IG Markets in Singapore.
"Broadly speaking, oil prices are largely supported due to expectation that non-OPEC production will begin to decline, while global demand is likely to pick up next year, according to OPEC forecast," he told AFP.
© 2015 AFP