Feb. 11 (UPI) -- Oil prices appeared to be feeling the impact of reports of rising production rigs as they started lower in the morning, extending a decline that started last week.
West Texas Intermediate crude future prices fell 0.8 percent to $52.28 as of 9:00 a.m. EST, while Brent crude oil fell 0.3 percent to $61.90 per barrel at the same time.
"This comes on the back of a 4.6 percent decline last week, the steepest fall since Dec. 21, 2018," independent analyst Lakshan de Silva told UPI. The drop for Brent last week was 1 percent.
"WTI prices faced more headwinds in term of rising active drilling rigs, Baker Hughes data showed a rise by 7 to 845 last week. This reversed the trend set a week earlier where active oil rigs fell by 15. Ideally the current macro noise should provide tailwinds to crude prices, given the political instability in Venezuela, and production cuts announced by OPEC," de Silva added.
OPEC will on Tuesday issue a report with monthly output data.
OPEC agreed at a Dec. 7 meeting to cut output by 800,000 barrels per day, with non-OPEC countries led by Russia cutting another 400,000 barrels per day. The cuts were to go into effect in January, so Tuesday's report would be the first after the cuts.
A "current tepid global economic sentiment, and dovish tones conveyed by global central banks appear to have hampered any upward price potential for crude prices," de Silva said.
Separately, Tyler Yell, DailyFX analyst, wrote in a report that "the falling global supply or access of Venezuelan oil from PDVSA may further support price increases in the near future."
"Crude and the commodities sector as a whole remains one of 2019's hottest investments. Iron Ore is up 30 percent, while Brent & WTI are higher by 18.4 percent & 15.8 percent respectively. Equities are only up a measly 8 percent in the US' Standard & Poor 500," Yell added.
The world's biggest iron ore miner, Brazil's has announced plans to reduce output after the tragic collapse of a tailings dam as it makes efforts to retire all similar dams. The collapse of a dam in January caused at least 165 deaths, with 160 still missing
WTI was $55.26 per barrel on Feb. 1, its highest level for the year and at $46.54 on January 2. Its highest level for all of 2018 was over $76 per barrel on October 3.