Crude Futures Stay Steady as OPEC Maintains Production Cuts

by Warren Seah

Crude futures see a slight increase as OPEC and its allies announce their decision to maintain current production cuts.

OPEC’s Joint Ministerial Monitoring Committee Upholds Production Quotas

OPEC’s Joint Ministerial Monitoring Committee has confirmed that it will leave current production quotas unchanged, citing the adherence of member countries to agreed-upon levels. The committee also emphasized its commitment to monitoring market conditions and its readiness to implement additional measures as needed.

Market Response

At noon ET, the NYMEX March West Texas Intermediate crude contract had risen by 90 cents to $76.75 per barrel, while the April WTI contract saw a similar increase to $76.60/bbl. Meanwhile, April ICE Brent futures in London rose by 95 cents to $81.50/bbl, with May Brent increasing by 85 cents to $81.10/bbl.

This uptick in crude prices can be attributed, in part, to renewed buying interest after a $3 per barrel decrease on Wednesday. Wednesday’s decline was prompted by weakened petroleum futures and equities following the U.S. Federal Reserve’s announcement of unchanged benchmark interest rates.

Steady Refined Product Futures

Refined product futures experienced little change in mostly directionless trade. The NYMEX March RBOB contract rose by 0.6 cents to settle at $2.237 per gallon, while the NYMEX March ULSD contract increased by 0.45 cents to $2.7895/gal.

OPEC+ Production Cuts

In November, OPEC+ agreed to reduce production by approximately 2.2 million barrels per day during the first quarter of this year. This decision has helped stabilize prices amidst an uncertain global economic outlook.

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