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Gulf Today Report
Oil prices advanced on Wednesday as investors remain hopeful of OPEC+ decision to delay the scheduled increase in oil output.
Brent crude futures for January rose 22 cents, or 0.5%, to $43.97 a barrel by 07:33 GMT, while US West Texas Intermediate crude for December climbed 6 cents, or 0.1%, to $41.49 a barrel.
Earlier in the session, both benchmarks fell following the American Petroleum Institute report on US crude stockpiles rising by 4.2 million barrels last week.
Saudi Arabia calls on OPEC+ to be meticulous in dealing with the oil markets as the demand for energy has decreased due to surging COVID-19 cases.
Hiroyuki Kikukawa, general manager of research at Nissan Securities said WTI might stay boxed into a range of $39 to $44 until a decision is made concerning holding off the increase in output.
OPEC+ is scheduled to hold a full ministerial meeting on Nov.30 and Dec.1.
OPEC+ members are considering delaying the increase in output that was scheduled for January.
Both benchmark contracts hovered around unchanged levels after having jumped on Wednesday after the US Energy Information Administration reported a sharp, unexpected 10.6 million barrel drop in crude stockpiles last week.
January Brent crude futures, which will expire later on Monday, dropped 46 cents, or 1%, to $47.72 a barrel by 03:55 GMT. Brent contract was at $47.83 a barrel, down 42 cents. US West Texas Intermediate crude futures for January fell 48 cents, or 1.1%, to $45.05 a barrel.
Overall business conditions in Dubai’s non-oil private sector economy improved at the fastest rate in over four years in April. This mainly reflected the trend in new business, as employment was broadly unchanged during the month. Notably, business conditions in the wholesale & retail sector
Egypt’s non-oil private sector economy saw renewed growth in April, according to latest PMI data. Output expanded for the first time in nearly one-and-a-half years and new business increased at a faster rate. Input purchasing and job numbers also rose, while business sentiment towards the year-ahead outlook for activity strengthened.
Asian shares rose on Wednesday after a strong lead from Wall Street fuelled by hopes for additional U.S. economic stimulus and a coronavirus vaccine, but trade was choppy as some investors booked profits.
Healthy off-take on the back of festive season accelerated major automobile players’ year-on-year sales during November. However, some companies reported a slower off-take on the sequential basis.
Fitch downgraded Sri Lanka’s sovereign credit rating to ‘CCC’, warning the country’s debt levels were set to soar past 100% of GDP and that it was increasingly at risk of default.