Oil slips as higher US output looms market

SINGAPORE: Oil prices gave up earlier gains on Monday as rising US output loomed over markets, despite a slowdown in rig drilling activity. US West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures were at $61.91 a barrel at 0755 GMT, down 13 cents, or 0.2 per cent.
Brent crude futures were at $65.38 per barrel, down 11 cents, or 0.2 per cent, from their previous close.
Analysts said a liquidation of long positions had contributed to the dips.
“Money managers liquidated 15,416 long positions in WTI last week while creating 4,386 new shorts,” Dutch bank ING said on Monday.
The dips came after crude prices had risen on Friday and earlier on Monday.
“A falling rig count and the strong employment data may have helped support prices,” said William O’Loughlin, investment analyst at Rivkin Securities.
The US economy added the biggest number of jobs in more than 1-1/2 years in February, with non-farm payrolls jumping by 313,000 jobs last month, the Labour Department said.
In oil markets, US energy companies last week cut oil rigs for the first time in almost two months, with drillers cutting back four rigs, to 796, Baker Hughes energy services firm said on Friday. — Reuters