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1/18/2016, 7:10 PM (Source: TeleTrader)
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Oil prices continue to slide after Iran’s return

The prices of crude oil kept falling on Monday, after touching levels not seen in last decade, with the return of Iran to the markets after the international sanctions were lifted, following a deadline agreed in July’s nuclear programme deal.

Global benchmark Brent was priced at $28.56 a barrel, up 2.70% compared to previous sessions, for January delivery, while the March delivery contracts were hovering around $30 a barrel by 6:59 p.m. CET. The American light sweet crude WTI was up 1.66% to $29.94 a barrel by 6:55 p.m. CET, with the March delivery prices around $31 a barrel.

Managing director of the National Iranian Oil Company Rokknodin Javadi said that the Oil Ministry was instructed to raise daily production by 500,000 barrels a day. Iran’s Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif conveyed a similar message, saying that a surplus of two million barrels a day should be cut only through a concerted action by all the members of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC). “If Iran does not increase its oil output, neighbouring countries may raise their crude production within the next six months to one year,” essentially taking Iran’s share of market, said Zarif.

On the other hand, the OPEC has predicted a fall in production by 400,000 barrels a day by the end of 2016, since low prices have stripped cash from the oil companies to invest in new equipment and research. The OPEC last reported on Monday its daily Basket Price at $24.74 a barrel for January 15.

Image: Beta/AP

Breaking the News / ZR