Iran oil minister: No change in production, export

Global outages overshadow underwhelming OPEC output hike

August West Texas Intermediate crude, the USA benchmark, on the New York Mercantile Exchange, fell 55 cents, or 0.8 percent to $72.39 a barrel.

He said the global hike in oil prices is a result of Donald Trump's demand from some OPEC members to increase their production.

Iran has threatened to block oil exports through a key Gulf waterway in retaliation for U.S. efforts to reduce Iranian oil sales to zero.

Donald Trump has insulted OPEC member states by ordering the organization to reduce prices, the Iranian oil minister stated, responding to the U.S. leader's recent criticism of OPEC for keeping oil prices artificially high. "Looming U.S. sanctions on Iran, however, are causing serious concerns amongst market players".

Saudi Arabia's total supplies to the market in June were even higher than well-head production, the sources said, suggesting the Kingdom sold crude from storage.

Saudi Arabia has wanted to sell shares in Aramco to bring in foreign investment to diversify its economy, but legal concerns about listing in places like London or NY have presented complications.

US crude stockpiles rose 1.3 million barrels last week, according to US Energy Information Administration data.




"These days... the price is dependent on the behaviour of Mr. Trump", Iranian Oil Minister Bijan Namdar Zanganeh said on state television.

"As far as the geopolitical posturing via twitter or official statements, I think the market is taking them in stride for now", Tchilinguirian said. "Because the oil market is already in tight supply due to the numerous outages, this would drive global prices (Brent) further up", Commerzbank said in a note.

Saudi Arabian Oil Co will change its Asia crude pricing benchmark by replacing Platts' Oman assessment with the Dubai Mercantile Exchange's Oman futures from October 1.

Oil prices dropped Thursday after weekly government data showed a surprise rise in US crude stockpiles last week as refineries cut output, while gasoline stocks decreased and distillate fuel inventories rose.

The EU, once Iran's biggest oil importer, has promised to try keep the 2015 nuclear deal alive without the United States by trying to keep oil and investment flowing.

USA tariffs on $34 billion in Chinese imports took effect as a deadline passed on Friday and Beijing has vowed to respond in kind.

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