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  • EIA’s monthly report reveals that daily crude oil production in September hits record high.
  • Baker Hughes rig count rises to 887.
  • Russia’s Novak says producers are comfortable with current prices.

Following Thursday’s modest recovery, crude oil prices started the last day of the week under pressure and the barrel of West Texas Intermediate briefly dipped below the $50 mark before staging a rebound in the last hours. As of writing, the WTI was virtually unchanged on a daily basis at $51.25. With this latest rise, the WTI stays on track to record weekly gains for the first time since the first week of October.

Earlier today, crude oil fell sharply after Russian news agency TASS reported that  Russian Energy Minister Alexander Novak said that OPEC+ producers were comfortable with current oil prices and added that they were planning to maintain the average October output level until the end of the year.  

Meanwhile, investors are paying a close attention to the critical meeting between President Trump and President Xi at the G20 summit. Earlier in the session, in a joint press conference with Japanese PM Abe, Trump told reporters that there were some good signs regarding the upcoming trade talks and heightened expectations of a positive outcome, which could mean higher oil demand from China in the near term. Although these headlines helped crude oil reverse its course, the data from the U.S. limited the recovery gains.

The monthly report published by the EIA today revealed that the crude oil production in the U.S. increased by 129,000 barrels per day in September to lift the average daily output to a record high of 11.5 million barrels. Additionally, Baker Hughes reported that the total number of active oil rigs in the U.S. rose to 887 this week.  

Technical levels to consider

The initial support for the WTI stays at $50 (psychological level/23 – 24 – 26 Nov. low) ahead of $49.10 (Oct. 9, 2017, low) and $48.10 (Sep. 13, 2017, low). On the upside, resistances align at $51.80 (daily high), $52.50 (Nov. 28 high) and $54 (Nov. 23 high).