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Oil Prices Fall On Concerns Over US Output

13 March 2018

Crude prices had risen on Friday and earlier on Monday after the US economy added the biggest number of jobs in more than 1-1/2 years in February.

Brent crude futures were up 41 cents at $65.36 a barrel by 1415 GMT, off an earlier low of $64.35, while U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures were up 34 cents at $61.70 a barrel.

All loadings at the Libyan oil export port of Zawiya, which exports crude from the 308,000-barrel per day (bpd) El Sharara oil field, have stopped due to a strike, a Libyan website said. The U.S. benchmark gained $1.92 to $62.04 on Friday.

New indications of growing USA output come as the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries-which has been holding back output by 1.8 million barrels a day since the start of last year-is divided over how high the price of oil should be.

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That has undercut some of the enthusiasm for oil, as investors weigh increased US supply against the likelihood that the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries and non-OPEC producers will maintain supply cuts that have been in effect for more than a year.

The US economy added the biggest number of jobs in more than 1-1/2 years in February, with non-farm payrolls jumping by 313,000 jobs last month, the Labour Department said on Friday.

Oil market participants are looking ahead to monthly reports from OPEC and the IEA this week to see whether the agencies increase their forecasts for USA crude production, according to Giovanni Staunovo, an analyst at UBS Wealth Management.

"The market continues to flip back and forth on the idea that increased global demand and a production cut is going to support prices", said Gene McGillian, director of market research at Tradition Energy.

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US stocks, though, were mixed on Monday, with the S&P 500 down 2.08 points, or 0.07 percent, at 2,784.49 and the Dow Jones Industrial Average lower by 127.52 points, or 0.5 percent, at 25,208.22.

On Monday, benchmark 10-year notes last rose 8/32 in price to yield 2.8663 percent, hovering near multi-year highs. Influencing the market are geopolitical factors, potential world crisis', supply and demand, and weather changes, just to name a few factors. Prices could trade sideways if the dollar strengthens along with stocks.

MSCI's world equity index .

The broader trend remained positive for Wall Street's main indexes, which had closed up almost 2 percent on Friday on the strength of the jobs report.

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Emerging market stocks rose 1.21 percent. S. dollar. The dollar index .

Oil Prices Fall On Concerns Over US Output