Oil prices dropped on Tuesday ahead of the meeting of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries producers and allies, OPEC+ on Wednesday, where a boost in oil supplies is expected, and amid a recovery in US crude output following hurricane Ida that made landfall on the Gulf Coast over the weekend.
International benchmark Brent crude was trading at $72.16 per barrel at 0715 GMT for a 0.10% decrease after closing Tuesday at $72.23 a barrel.
American benchmark West Texas Intermediate (WTI) traded at $69.12 a barrel at the same time for a 0.13% fall after ending the previous session at $69.21 per barrel.
The markets are now focusing on the OPEC+ meeting on Wednesday when a boost in supply of a further 400,000 barrels per day (bpd) is expected.
The group, previously in the July meeting, had agreed to raise output by 400,000 bpd from August to December and extend its production cut agreement from April 2022 to December 2022.
Meanwhile, tropical storm Ida that strengthened to hurricane status threatened the northern US Gulf Coast where many oil majors, bp, Shell, Chevron and BHP are located. The hurricane forced either the complete closure or partial evacuation of many offshore platforms in the area, halting production.
However, US crude oil output began to slowly recover after the hurricane blew through the region over the weekend, and on Tuesday, prices came under pressure once again following the resumption of production.
Moreover, the Delta COVID-19 variant is still considered a risk factor in adversely affecting the economic recovery and global oil demand.
By Firdevs Yuksel