Oil prices rise as markets await OPEC+ decision, evaluate financial indicators

(MENAFN) On Friday, oil prices experienced a notable increase, poised for weekly gains amidst anticipation surrounding OPEC+'s impending decision on production levels for the second quarter. This surge in prices coincided with the evaluation of fresh economic data emanating from key regions such as the United States, Europe, and China.

As of 13:34 GMT, Brent crude futures for May delivery surged by USD1.43, representing a 1.75 percent rise, reaching USD83.34 per barrel. Meanwhile, crude futures for April delivery, which expired on February 29, recorded a price of USD83.62 per barrel. In tandem, US West Texas Intermediate crude for April delivery saw a substantial increase of USD1.54, marking a 1.97 percent climb, and settling at USD79.80.

The robust performance of US crude oil this week is evident, with a projected increase of 4.3 percent, while Brent crude oil is positioned 2.1 percent higher compared to last week's settlement price. Market analysts anticipate a pivotal decision regarding the extension of OPEC+ production cuts in the first week of March, with each member country expected to disclose its stance individually.

According to a Reuters survey, OPEC collectively pumped 26.42 million barrels per day in February, reflecting a modest uptick of 90,000 barrels per day from the preceding month. Furthermore, market sentiment received a boost on Friday from strong expectations that Saudi Arabia, a key player in the oil market, will maintain crude oil prices for its Asian clientele at levels similar to those of March in the upcoming month of April.


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