thi cong backdropBy Karolin Schaps

AMSTERDAM, August 21 (Reuters) – Oil prices fell around 1% on Monday as a new rally at the conclusion of last week motivated investors to close positions at a higher cost, against a backdrop of signs the global market is starting to rebalance.

Benchmark Brent crude futures had been down 56 cents at $52. 16 a barrel or clip at 1342 GMT, after surging more than a few percent in the previous session.

You. S. West Texas Intermediate crude futures traded from $48. 19 a clip or barrel, down 32 cents. The contract had also increased 3 percent in typically the previous session.

“We are currently seeing some profit-taking after Friday’s strong rally before this week’s inventory data, ” said Hans truck Cleef, senior energy economist at ABN Amro.

“Fresh uncertainty about inventories plus OPEC compliance (with agreed production cuts) could become enough reason to offer some of the lengthy positions. ”

U. T. hedge funds and money managers have already began reducing their bets about rising prices, with Item Futures Trading Commission data showing on Friday of which investors had cut high bets on U. T. crude for a 2nd straight week.

Investors within Europe disagree on the outlook, however, as data from the InterContinental Trade showed speculators raised bullish Brent crude bets a week ago.


The world remains awash with oil despite the deal struck by several of the world’s greatest producers to rein in output. Rising U. T. production has been a major factor keeping source and demand from balancing.

However, there are indications of which U. S. output may soon slow, as energy companies cut rigs going for new oil for a second week in three, energy services organization Baker Hughes reported upon Friday. Drillers cut five rigs in the 7 days to Aug. 18, reducing the count to 763.

“The machine count suffered its greatest fall since January, incorporating to signs that the particular market is tightening, ” ANZ bank said.

Likewise, U. S. commercial crude inventories have fallen almost 13 percent from their ban standee March peaks to 466. 5 million barrels.

The oil ressortchef (umgangssprachlich) of Kuwait, which is usually participating in OPEC-led production cuts, said U. H. crude stocks were slipping more than expected since output cuts were taking effect.

Azerbaijan, not a good OPEC member but a single of the countries which has committed to the production curbing deal, likewise remains devoted to decreasing result, the head of state oil company SOCAR advised Reuters in an meeting.

Elsewhere, a shutdown of Libya’s Sharara field due to a pipeline blockage provided some upside. Libya’s National Oil Corp declared force majeure on loadings of Sharara crude from the Zawiya oil terminal on Weekend.

(Additional reporting by Henning Gloystein in Singapore; Modifying by David Holmes in addition to David Evans)