SINGAPORE (Reuters) – Oil prices fell on Friday, weighed down by concerns that producers are churning out more oil than the world needs amid a bleak economic outlook.
U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures CLc1, were at $53.83 per barrel at 0029 GMT, 80 cents, or 1.5 percent below their last settlement.
Front-month Brent crude oil futures LCOc1 had yet to trade.
“Oil prices fell as concerns of further oversupply drove sentiment lower,” ANZ bank said on Friday.
Oil supply has surged this year, with the top-three producers of the United States, Russia and Saudi Arabia pumping out more than a third of global consumption, which stands around 100 million barrels per day (bpd).
High production comes as the demand outlook weakens on the back of a global economic slowdown.
As a result, oil prices have plunged by around 30 percent since their last peaks in early October.
Adjusting to lower demand, top crude exporter Saudi Arabia said on Thursday that it may reduce supply.
“We will not sell oil that customers don’t need,” Saudi Energy Minister Khalid al-Falih said.
Saudi Arabia is the de-facto leader of the producer cartel of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC), which is discussing to cut oil supply by as much as 1.4 million bpd to prevent a supply glut.
Reporting by Henning Gloystein; editing by Richard Pullin