Both benchmarks were headed for their first weekly drop in five weeks, pressured by a big rise in US inventories and fading concerns about shrinking global supplies due to looming USA sanctions on Iran’s oil exports.
Benchmark Brent crude jumped by $1.13 a barrel to a high of $85.04 before easing back to $84.56, up 65 cents, by 1330 GMT.
U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude CLc1 futures were down by 91 cents, or 1.2 per cent, at $72.26, having also fallen to their lowest since September 27.
The report further said that Tehran decreased its oil production by 150,000 barrels per day to 3.447 million barrels per day in September amid United States sanctions against the Iranian crude.
The tanker shipments might change weekly, but the lower volumes in the starting phase of October indicate that Iranian crude oil exports are striking and falling rapidly than the market expected just a few months ago.
India, a major buyer, has ordered Iranian oil for November, although New Delhi does not yet know whether it will receive such a waiver.
Oil prices steadied on Friday after a market rout driven by sharp falls in equity markets and indications that supply concerns have been overblown, but were still on track for a fall or more than 4 percent for the week.
Iran, OPEC’s third-largest producer, exported 1.1 million barrels per day (bpd) of crude in that seven-day period, Refinitiv Eikon data showed.
Platts reported that the 33.07 million barrels in last month were the highest OPEC has manufactured since July 2017, if the Republic of Congo is not included in the list.
Iran has questioned whether the market needs more oil and says its output is holding steady at about 3.8 million bpd.
Several of the world’s biggest trading houses expect U.S. sanctions on Iran to keep oil prices high, with crude staying above $65 and possibly breaking above $100 in the medium term. At the same time, it added 200,000 barrels a day to its estimate for non-OPEC supply this year as the U.S., Canada, Kazakhstan and Brazil grow faster than expected. It may lower fuel demand in the US southeastern markets by 1 million barrels a day, according to Mizuho Securities. Crude could be US$5 to US$10 lower by January, he said.
Total crude output lost in the last three days from shut-ins amounted to 1.7 million barrels, according to BSEE data.
Among the reasons for reduced oil demand growth forecasts, the cartel cited potential headwinds for the world’s economic growth, with growth trends starting to diverge between and within regions.