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Oil rises as dollar retreats from two-week high

Oil rises as dollar retreats from two-week high

Prices rose after comments from the Saudi and Russian oil minister about possible action to stabilise prices triggered a round of buying.

For his part, Lee doesn't hold any false hope that his insight will gain traction in the trading world: "This won't stop others in OPEC from continuing to promote the idea of a freeze; nor will it prevent the oil price from jumping on every hint of a deal, no matter how absurd".

The rise was also triggered by speculation that producers' meeting in Algeria next month will support the prices.

The comments about high oil output have dampened expectations that Opec and outside producers such as Russian Federation will agree steps next month to support prices such as a production freeze, following the collapse of a similar effort in April.

Iraq, which is Opec's second-largest producer, trailing Saudi Arabia, depends on oil sales for 95 per cent of its public spending and appears set to continue boosting production, which now stands at around 4.6 million barrels per day.

Shell said it had shut production at its Coulomb field in the region after BP shut its Na Kika platform ahead of Tropical Depression Nine.

Iran's plan to keep boosting crude production until it regains its OPEC market share is dimming prospects of collective action by major producers to freeze output, according to Patrick Allman-Ward, chief executive officer of Dana Gas PJSC.

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OECD inventories still remain high.

US West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude was up 17c at $47.15 a barrel.

The increase in drilling rigs is resulting in an increase in oil production, which is finding its way into storage.

Data from the API and the EIA are often contrasting, which adds to the volatility of the market, especially amid other developments such as the coming OPEC meeting in September where a production freeze will be discussed.

The American Petroleum Institute (API) reported Tuesday that United States crude inventories rose by 942,000 barrels in the latest week, following a 4.5 million-barrel build the week before. In OECD countries, total commercial stocks fell in June to stand at 3,045 mbpd, which is 311 mbpd above the latest five-year average.

"While we see high probability of some 80 to 90 percent of a return to $39 WTI, we also feel that achievement of this objective could still be some four to five weeks away", said Jim Ritterbusch of Chicago-based oil markets consultancy Ritterbusch & Associates.

"Brent oil is expected to approach a support at $48.52 per barrel again, as its correction from the August 19 high of $51.22 has not completed", he said.

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