OPEC members’ average crude price fell below $80 for the first time in four years as Saudi Arabia and other members of the group supplying 40 percent of the world’s oil maintained output amid slowing demand growth.
The OPEC basket, the best measure of what the oil exporters earn per barrel, fell to $78.67 yesterday, the group said by e-mail today. That’s the lowest since October 22, 2010, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.
U.S. oil production rose to the highest in at least 31 years amid slowing global demand, helping drive crude into a bear market last month. The largest producers in the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries reduced prices rather than cut output, with Saudi Arabia, Iraq and Iran offering the biggest discounts to buyers in Asia this month since at least 2009. The group will meet in Vienna on Nov. 27 to discuss whether to cut output to support prices.