Oil prices fell more than $2 per barrel on Friday as Saudi Arabia and Russian Federation discussed easing production cuts that have helped push crude prices to their highest since 2014.Brent crude futures fell $2.35, or 3 percent, to settle at $76.44 a barrel.
SBI Capital Markets said in a recent report that rising crude oil prices may worsen the country's Current Account Deficit (CAD) to 2.5 per cent in the present financial year from an estimated 1.9 per cent in the last financial year.
The premium of Brent crude over US West Texas Intermediate futures neared $8 a barrel, close to its widest in three years.
The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries may decide in June to lift output to make up for reduced supply from crisis-hit Venezuela and Iran, which was stung by the USA decision to withdraw from the nuclear arms control deal, OPEC and oil industry sources told Reuters.
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Prices dipped lower after Saudi Arabia energy minister Khalid Al-Falih said the country was prepared to adjust its policy in June but did not confirm by how much output could increase. The pact began in January 2017 and is set to expire at the end of 2018. Non-OPEC states pledged to jointly decrease oil output by 558,000 barrels per day, with Russian Federation pledging to cut production by 300,000 barrels daily.
The re-balance is sure to be the focus of a tense meeting between OPEC and its partners in the production cuts when they meet in Vienna next month.
Venezuela's output has fallen to about 1.4 million barrels per day, according to OPEC secondary sources, as its economic crisis grows and state-run PDVSA struggles to pay debts and fund operations.
Meanwhile, easing geopolitical tensions, following North Korea's measured response to the US President Donald Trump's announcement to call off a June 12 summit, did little to lift the sentiment, albeit helped limit deeper losses.
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Investors were also looking ahead to inventory data later in the day. The data from the statistical arm of the oil ministry also shows the country's total crude oil import bill in the current financial year (2018-2019) is expected to jump 24 per cent to $109 billion from United States dollars 88 billion last fiscal year.
However, due to the rally in the crude oil and petroleum product prices, the country's gross petroleum import bill grew 24 per cent to $9.4 billion as compared to $7.6 billion recorded in the corresponding month of the last financial year.
In other energy trading, Gasoline RBOB Futures decreased 1.80% at $2.1933 a gallon, while heating oil fell 1.83% to $2.2252 a gallon.
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