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Oil Prices Rise On Supply Cuts, US Sanctions

Oil prices rose on Wednesday amid signs of tightening global supply after Saudi Arabia announced plans to cut its crude oil exports in April and the U.S. said it plans to impose "very significant" Venezuela-related sanctions against financial institutions in the coming days.

Global benchmark Brent crude climbed 0.7 percent to $67.16 a barrel while U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures were up 1.1 percent at $57.48 per barrel.

Oil cartel OPEC is sending a clear message that if the "No Oil Producing and Exporting Cartels Act" (NOPEC) is passed, it would weaken the U.S., not foreign oil powers.

Since January 1, OPEC and its allies including Russia have been cutting at least 1.2 million barrels per day from production in an effort to reduce the global supply glut.

Markets have been further tightened by the implementation of U.S. sanctions against oil exports from Iran and Venezuela, though record U.S. crude output and rising commercial fuel inventories limited the upside.

Venezuela is struggling with the most massive blackout in its history. A devastating electricity blackout swept over Venezuela late last week, crippling daily life for much of the country.

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