Oil prices fight back

12th February 2016, Comments 0 comments

Oil surged Friday, mirroring a recovery across European stock markets, as traders hunted for bargains after a turbulent week, analysts said.

Crude futures in London and New York trading were up 5.0 percent around 1200 GMT, a day after US prices tanked towards 13-year lows.

Thursday's sharp falls "triggered some kind of bargain-hunting", said Bernard Aw, a market strategist at trading firm IG.

He added it was unlikely that price support had come from another report suggesting the OPEC producers' cartel was open to working towards cutting output .

The point was echoed by Michael McCarthy, chief market strategist at CMC Markets in Australia.

"Until we hear an indication from a country or from a large producer that they are prepared to cut their own production, I would severely discount these comments," he told AFP.

Low oil prices have hammered OPEC's poorer producers such as Venezuela and Nigeria, but its influential Gulf members led by Saudi Arabia have refused to cut output as it looks to maintain market share in the face of competition from US shale.

The Wall Street Journal quoted United Arab Emirates energy minister Suhail Al Mazrouei as saying that the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries was willing to cooperate with other producers on trimming the global crude supply glut.

In Friday deals, Brent North Sea crude for delivery in April jumped $1.60, or 5.3 percent, to $31.66 a barrel.

US benchmark West Texas Intermediate for March was up $1.30, or 5.0 percent, at $27.50 a barrel compared with Thursday's close.

WTI had Thursday settled at $26.21 -- the lowest close since May 2003. The contract is down around 11 percent for the week.

© 2016 AFP

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