New Peak for Prices on OPEC+ Restraint

Petroleum prices hit multi-year highs on Wednesday above $83.00 U.S. a barrel, supported by the refusal of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries and its allies (OPEC+) to ramp up production more rapidly against a backdrop of concern about tight energy supply globally. Later in the session, however, crude eased from its highs.

The market later unwound those gains due to an American Petroleum Institute (API) report showing rising crude inventories in the United States and, analysts said, technical indicators suggesting oil has rallied too fast.

On Monday, OPEC+ chose to stay with a plan to increase output gradually and not boost it further as the U.S. and other consumer nations have been urging.

Brent crude rose as high as $83.47, the highest since October 2018, but was last down 38 cents at $82.16. U.S. crude climbed to $79.78, the highest since November 2014, but then retreated 35 cents to $78.58 per barrel.

Some downward pressure came from the API’s figures showing signs of slowing fuel demand.

The industry group said U.S. crude inventories rose by 951,000 barrels in the week to Oct. 1, website Oilprice.com reported, and gasoline and distillate fuel inventories also climbed.