Trump says OPEC 'monopoly' must get prices down

On Tuesday Saudi Arabia said it was willing to see prices climb above $80 a barrel

While Iran's exports have moved in Trump's favor, the president faces the predicament of wanting oil prices to come down before US midterm elections on November 6.

US crude futures ended Wednesday's session up $1.27 a barrel, or 1.8%, at $71.12/Bbl, its best closing price since early July, Kallanish Energy reports.

Brent oil traded near the highest level in a week after Saudi Arabia was said to be content with the global benchmark crude breaking above USD80 a barrel. The commercial crude oil inventories excluding SPR is 16.6 percent below the levels of the same week past year.

OPEC and other producers, including Russian Federation, meet on Sunday in Algeria to discuss how to allocate supply increases to offset the loss of Iranian barrels. Earlier this month, Saudi shipments into the US reached a four-week average of 1 million barrels a day for the first time since late 2017, according to government data.

The rebound gained steam earlier this year after production problems in countries like Venezuela and Libya caused the group to cut more deeply than they intended.

Investors grappled with the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries and non-OPEC producers' ability to offset a shortfall from Iran due to USA sanctions that go into full force November 4.

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As the Brent-WTI spread started widening to average $5 a barrel in the first half of 2018, East Coast refineries again increased their purchases of domestic crude oil, but this time in far lower quantities than in 2015, the EIA noted. Gasoline stocks fell 1.7 million barrels versus forecasts for a 100,000-barrel drop.

Distillate stockpiles, which include diesel and heating oil, rose 839,000 barrels, versus expectations for a 651,000-barrel increase, the EIA data showed.

Trump has consistently complained that oil prices are too high, following a significant uptick in prices that has been passed on at the pump to U.S. drivers.

In July, the president sent a similar tweet, bemoaning prices at the pump, telling OPEC to "REDUCE PRICING NOW!".Later that month OPEC boosted production by 41,000 to 32.32 million barrels, as noted in OPEC's monthly report.

The weekend gathering will discuss how to share the previously agreed output increase and examine whether the market needs more oil to offset the loss of Iranian supply as well as a decline in Venezuelan output, the sources said. It only goes to underline the fact that the market is now much more sensitive to developments related to oil supply.

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