Oil Futures Ease in Asia After Overnight Rebound

By Biman Mukherji Features Dow Jones Newswires

Oil futures pulled back some in Asia on Thursday after an overnight rebound in which investors ultimately took a bullish view on weekly U.S. inventory data.

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On the New York Mercantile Exchange, light, sweet crude futures for delivery in September was recently down 0.3% at $49.44 a barrel in the Globex electronic session. October Brent crude on London's ICE Futures exchange fell 0.3% to $52.18.

The Energy Information Administration reported a 1.5 million barrel drop in U.S. crude inventories last week, below analysts' expectations. However, "a strong increase in demand was enough to appease the bullish investors," said ANZ Bank. Refiners' capacity utilization jumped to 95.4% last week, the government also said.

This as market players globally continue await signs that the production caps led by the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries and Russia are making notable dents into still-historically high global supplies. ANZ sees tightness coming in the fourth quarter, pushing oil prices into the high-$50s.

OPEC is set to hold a two-day meeting next week to review members' commitments to the production caps. Several smaller producers, such as Ecuador, have voiced their dissension, saying they don't have economic wherewithal to keep sidelining production.

Among refined products, September Nymex reformulated gasoline blendstock was recently down 0.4% at $1.6388 a gallon and diesel dropped the same, to $1.6515, but August gasoil rose 0.2% to $489.25 per metric ton.

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Write to Biman Mukherji at biman.mukherji@dowjones.com

(END) Dow Jones Newswires

August 03, 2017 00:23 ET (04:23 GMT)