Investing.com - Oil prices climbed during North American hours on Thursday, pulling further away from the prior session's three-week low amid renewed optimism over the implementation of a planned deal by OPEC to limit production.
Saudi Arabia and its Gulf OPEC allies are willing to cut 4% from their peak oil output, energy ministers from the Gulf countries told their Russian counterpart this week, sources familiar with the matter told Reuters.
But Russian Energy Minister Alexander Novak told the officials that Moscow would not cut output, but rather freeze it at current levels, the sources said.
Brent oil for December delivery on the ICE Futures Exchange in London tacked on 35 cents, or 0.7%, to $50.33 a barrel by 9:42AM ET (13:42GMT).
The contract slumped to $49.65 on Wednesday, the lowest since October 3, amid fading expectations of a coordinated production cut among major global oil producers.
The 14-member oil group reached an agreement to cap output to a range of 32.5 million to 33.0 million barrels per day in talks held on the sidelines of an energy conference in Algeria late last month.
However, OPEC said it won’t finalize details on individual output quotas until its next official meeting in Vienna on November 30.
In September, the group’s production reached 33.4 million barrels a day.
The possibility that producers could walk away empty-handed from the upcoming meeting looms large after Iraq, Iran, Nigeria and Libya all signaled they might not take part in the proposed production cut deal. Russia’s unclear stance is also fueling uncertainty.
Elsewhere, crude oil for December delivery on the New York Mercantile Exchange inched up 22 cents, or 0.45%, to $49.41 a barrel.
On Wednesday, New York-traded oil closed down 78 cents, or 1.56%, at $49.18, after falling to $48.87, a level not seen since October 4.
U.S. crude oil inventories unexpectedly fell by 553,000 barrels last week to 468.2 million barrels, the Energy Information Administration said Wednesday. However, the decline was centered on the West Coast, which is isolated from the rest of the network.
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