Oil mixed as OPEC cites uncertain market outlook for 2018

Source: Reuters

NEW YORK (Reuters) - Oil prices were mixed on Tuesday, with U.S. crude edging higher and Brent crude slipping, as investors prepared for a key meeting of the OPEC producer group next week.

Brent crude futures LCOc1 dipped 66 cents to trade at $75.80 a barrel by 2:13 p.m (1813 GMT), while U.S. West Texas Intermediate crude futures CLc1 climbed 15 cents to $66.25.

“I was looking for an up day (for WTI) - in just a few weeks it had fallen from around $73 (a barrel) to $65, ... and even for the window of seasonal decline, that’s a big move to go uncorrected,” said Walter Zimmerman, chief technical analyst at ICAP-TA.

A stronger dollar .DXY and euro weakness EUR= was putting some pressure on Brent prices, said Phillip Streible, senior market strategist at RJO Futures in Chicago. A strong dollar makes greenback-denominated oil more expensive for holders of other currencies.

The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries released its monthly report on Tuesday, saying a high degree of uncertainty was hanging over the global oil market.

OPEC and other producing countries including Russia have cut oil output by 1.8 million barrels per day (bpd) since January 2017 in an effort to boost the market.

OPEC holds its next meeting on June 22-23, and is expected to decide on future supply policy.

With U.S. sanctions threatening to cut Iranian exports and the potential for more declines in Venezuelan production, OPEC kingpin Saudi Arabia and Russia have indicated they would be willing to raise output to make up for any supply shortfall.

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