LONDON (AFP) -World oil prices rallied slightly, but only after New York crude had struck the lowest point since last December.
Market participants were awaiting a weekly update on energy inventories from the US government later Thursday, a day later than normal owing to Monday’s Columbus Day holiday.
New York’s main contract, light sweet crude for delivery in November, rose 27 cents to 57.86 dollars per barrel in electronic deals before the official opening of the US market.
It had earlier fallen to 57.40 dollars — the lowest point since December 27, 2005.
In London, Brent North Sea crude for November delivery advanced 18 cents to 58.83 dollars per barrel in electronic trading. It earlier Thursday dropped to 58.26 dollars — a level last reached in mid-February.
Crude futures had extended losses in Asian trade as the market discounted news of a planned OPEC cut in output, dealers said.
The 11 members of the Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries cartel have agreed to slash output by a million barrels a day, the OPEC president said Wednesday in a move aimed at shoring up sliding world crude prices.
The oil market has been waiting more than two weeks for a clear signal from OPEC in reaction to a 25 percent plunge in crude prices over the last two months.