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Oil streak continues into Monday

The price for U.S. crude oil breaks the $40 mark as last week's momentum builds.

By Daniel J. Graeber
Oil streak continues into Monday
Oil rally extends into Monday trading as investors wait in anticipation for a weekend production meeting in Doha. West Texas Intermediate moved above $40 per barrel early in the session. File photo by Monika Graff/UPI | License Photo

NEW YORK, April 11 (UPI) -- Oil prices moved higher early Monday on word Kuwait was on board with meetings to consider a production freeze output, though economic data could erase gains.

Mohammed al-Shatti, the Kuwaiti envoy to the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries, told Russian news agency Tass his country about the prospects of reaching an agreement to hold output steady during a meeting Sunday in Doha.

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"I'd like to stress it out that everyone is going there for a productive meeting," he was quoted as saying. "And I really think it will be so."

That was enough for crude oil prices to extend Friday's rally, though levels had dipped into the red in overnight trading. The price for Brent crude oil gained 0.7 percent to $42.25 per barrel in the minutes before the ringing of the opening bell in New York. West Texas Intermediate, the U.S. benchmark for the price of crude oil, moved up 0.8 percent to $40.04 per barrel.

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Russia has been among the major supporters of some sort of agreement to keep output steady in an effort to push energy markets away from supply-side pressure. Saudi Arabia said it would play a role provided other major producers like Iran take part.

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Crude oil prices rallied Monday despite mixed reports on major economies from the World Bank. Led by India, the World Bank reported economic growth in South Asia should accelerate from 7.1 percent in 2016 to 7.3 percent by next year. Decoupled from the problems tied to the energy sector, the bank said the regional economy has been resilient when compared with other regions.

Elsewhere, the World Bank said East Asia and Pacific economic growth should expand from 4.8 percent this year to 4.9 percent through 2019, when data exclude China.

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"However, the outlook for individual countries varies, depending on their trade and financial relationships with high-income economies and China, as well as their dependence on commodity exports," the bank said in a regional profile.

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