BAGHDAD, Oil price rose to a one-week high on Tuesday ahead of an expected drop in US crude stocks, backed by US sanctions on Iran, although the trade dispute between Washington and Beijing has kept traders and analysts vigilant.
Brent crude futures for October delivery rose 42 cents to settle at $ 72.63 a barrel, Reuters reported in its release on Thursday. The world's benchmark crude was trading at $ 72.95 a barrel earlier, its highest price since August 14.
US crude for October delivery, the most active crude contract, rose 42 cents to $ 65.84 a barrel. September ended today, closing 92 cents higher at $ 67.35.
US crude inventories are expected to have fallen by about 1.5 million barrels last week, according to analysts polled ahead of sector data at 2030 GMT on Tuesday and government data on Wednesday.
Oil prices rose in the last two sessions following weeks of declines on expectations of lower Iranian supply. The United States is trying to halt Iranian oil exports in an effort to get Tehran to negotiate a new nuclear deal and curb its influence in the Middle East.
While most European energy companies are likely to stick to Washington's position, China has indicated it will continue to buy Iranian oil.
BNP Paribas said he expects output from the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC), and Iran, to decline to 31.7 million bpd in 2019 from an average of 32.1 million bpd in 2018.
But oil exports from southern Iraq are heading towards a new record high this month, according to two sources in the sector, reinforcing signs that OPEC's second-largest producer is in the process of implementing an OPEC agreement to boost production.
Washington on Monday offered 11 million barrels of high-sulfur crude from its strategic oil reserves for delivery from October 1 to Nov. 30. This could compensate for the expected shortfall in sanctions imposed on Iran.
Source: National Iraqi News Agency