Crude oil prices opened steady with little change on Thursday as global markets and investors await news on the date and location of the phase-one trade deal between the U.S. and China.
International benchmark Brent crude was trading at $61.72 per barrel at 0650 GMT, marking with a slight decline of 0.08% after closing Wednesday at $61.77 a barrel.
American benchmark West Texas Intermediate was at $56.36 a barrel at the same time, showing little change with a 0.05% increase after ending the previous session at $56.33 per barrel.
Both benchmarks ended Wednesday with losses as the meeting between U.S. President Donald Trump and his Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping to sign the phase-one trade deal due in November has been postponed to December, according to media reports.
Because of the postponement, indexes in the New York Stock Exchange closed mixed on Wednesday, although they reached record highs over previous days due to strong company earnings in the third quarter of 2019 based on hopes that the world's two largest economies would sign an interim deal this month.
As the question over the timing and location of the interim deal signing linger, uncertainties remain over the global economic growth outlook and oil demand.
On the supply side, the U.S.' crude oil production remains at a record high level of 12.6 million barrels per day, forcing oil prices lower.
OPEC and its allies will convene in Vienna on Dec. 5-6 for their semi-annual meeting to discuss the current condition of the global oil market.
The group, dubbed as OPEC+, is expected to make deeper cuts in their production levels to rid the glut of supply in the global oil market and push prices higher.
Saudi Arabia, the world's biggest crude exporter, also seeks higher oil prices before its crown jewel Aramco's initial public offering in Saudi stock exchange Tadawul on Dec. 11.
By Ovunc Kutlu