Brent Rises above 75 a Barrel on Strong Demand Outlook

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Crude oil prices retreated on Tuesday, after Brent rose above 75 a barrel for the first time since April 2019 and as OPEC begins discussions on raising oil production, but a strong demand outlook underpinned prices.

Brent crude futures fell 53 cents, or 0.7, to 74.37 a barrel by 0939 GMT, after hitting a session high of 75.30 a barrel, the strongest since April 25, 2019.

U.S. West Texas Intermediate WTI crude was at 72.97 a barrel, down 69 cents, 0.9.

OPEC is discussing a gradual increase of oil output from August, but no decision has been taken on the exact volume yet, an OPEC source said on Tuesday.

The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries and allies, known as OPEC, is already returning 2.1 million barrels per day bpd to the market from May through July as part of a plan to gradually unwind last years record output curbs, as demand recovers from the pandemic.

The group meets next on July 1.

Both benchmarks have risen for the last four weeks in response to the rollout of global COVID19 vaccinations and an expected pickup in summer travel.

Because of tight physical markets and healthy demand perceptions, the risk remains skewed to the upside, oil brokerage PVM said.

BofA Global Research raised its Brent crude price forecasts for this year and next, saying that tighter oil supply and recovering demand could push oil briefly to 100 per barrel in 2022.

Negotiations to revive the Iran nuclear deal took a pause on Sunday after hardline judge Ebrahim…

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