Crude oil prices were trading lower at the beginning of the new week on Monday as producers in the U.S. added oil rigs for the first time this year -- a sign that crude output in the country will increase while keeping up pricing pressure.
International benchmark Brent crude was trading at $60.94 per barrel at 0620 GMT with a 0.3 percent loss after ending the previous session at $61.14 a barrel.
American benchmark West Texas Intermediate (WTI) was at $53.08 a barrel at the same time for a daily loss of 0.3 percent, previously closing at $53.27 per barrel.
The number of oil rigs in the U.S., which is a short-term indicator for crude oil production in the country, rose by 10 for the week ending Jan. 25, according to data of oilfield services company Baker Hughes released on Friday.
As this marked the first time American producers added oil rigs since the beginning of the year, crude production in the U.S. is forecast to climb to fresh record high levels in 2019 and 2020.
Crude oil production in the country is estimated to average 12.1 million barrels per day (bpd) this year and 12.9 million bpd next year, according to the U.S.' Energy Information Administration's Short Term Energy Outlook report for January.
The U.S.' crude oil production had climbed to a record high of 11.9 million bpd for the week ending Jan. 11, and remained around this level last week, according to EIA data.
By Ovunc Kutlu