Saudi won't up oil export in July in blow to Trump

The German share price index DAX board is seen at the stock exchange in Frankfurt Germany

The German share price index DAX board is seen at the stock exchange in Frankfurt Germany

The West Texas Intermediate (WTI) for August delivery added 0.68 us dollar to settle at 68.76 dollars a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange, while Brent crude for September delivery increased 0.74 dollar to close at 72.90 dollars a barrel on the London ICE Futures Exchange.

Brent futures were down 40 cents, or 0.6 percent, at $71.76 a barrel by 0027 GMT.

Signs of Russian Federation and Saudi Arabia increasing oil production, as well as last week's surprise build in US crude stocks, have also weighed on prices, said Tariq Zahir, analyst at Tyche Capital Advisors.

Figures showing refineries processing plenty of crude and stockpiles dropping at the Cushing, Oklahoma, delivery hub also supported the market, said John Kilduff, founding partner at energy hedge fund Again Capital. This statement created a feeling of emergency, and oil prices jumped by more than 3.5 percent.

Under pressure from U.S. President Donald Trump, Saudi Arabia has rushed to boost oil production, only to discover that global markets might not yet need it. Yesterday, crude oil prices moved up, despite higher-than-expected U.S. inventories based on official data.

The commodity has fallen this month in wake of escalating US-China trade tensions and mounting concerns about renewed oversupply.

China and the United States are in the midst of a trade spat, with President Trump imposing tariffs on some Dollars 34 billion of Chinese goods earlier this month, prompting Beijing to retaliate.

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China's crude oil imports fell for a second month in a row in June to the lowest since December, as shrinking margins and volatile oil prices led some independent refiners to scale back purchases.

"Refinery utilization rates in the USA have been kept at nearly full capacity and it will gradually fall with planned maintenance, which will lead to a build-up in overall crude stockpiles, while gasoline and distillate inventories shrink", Lim Jaekyun, a commodities analyst at KB Securities, said by phone in Seoul.

OPEC will continue to play a key role in oil supply and prices in the global oil market through 2040. US West Texas Intermediate (WTI) was $1.11 higher at $69.89.

Saudi Arabia has told Opec it pumped 10.488 million bpd of crude oil last month, an increase of 458,000 bpd from the level it said it produced in May.

"They're pushing out a heck of a lot of crude right now, and they're anxious about the downward pressure on prices", said Mike Wittner, head of oil market research at Societe Generale SA in NY. The country has added almost 1-million barrels a day in production since November, thanks to rapid increases in shale drilling. A senior USA energy official has told The Wall Street Journal that Washington expects China to buy up much of the oil others won't due to the threat of U.S. sanctions. U.S. crude prices had reached a session high of $70.17 earlier in the trading day.

United States crude stocks rose by 5.8-million barrels last week, compared with a forecast of a decline of 3.6-million barrels.

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