West TX Oil at $79 on U.S. Stockpiles

West Texas Intermediate held gains from the biggest advance in two weeks after government data showed crude stockpiles fell at the largest U.S. storage hub. Brent was steady as Libya shut its main oil field.

Futures were little changed in New York after rising 1.9 percent yesterday. Crude supplies at Cushing, Oklahoma, the delivery point for WTI contracts, shrank by 551,000 barrels last week, the first decline in four weeks, the Energy Information Administration reported. Libya halted its Sharara field that had been disrupted by strikes and violence in the past, according to two people with direct knowledge of the matter.

Oil is trading in a bear market amid signs that global supply is outpacing demand. Leading OPEC producers have resisted calls to cut output as they compete with the U.S., which is pumping at the fastest pace in more than 30 years. The price collapse is a “concern for everyone,” Venezuela’s Foreign Minister Rafael Ramirez said as he met Saudi Arabia’s Oil Minister Ali Al-Naimi yesterday.


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