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Oil Prices Rally On Expectations Of More OPEC Cuts

Oil prices rose over 1 percent on Friday after Reuters reported, citing a Saudi oil official that Saudi Arabia, de facto leader of the OPEC, plans to maintain its crude oil exports below 7 million barrels per day in August and September.

A day before, the Bloomberg reported that the kingdom has phoned other oil producers to discuss possible policy responses amid a continued slide in prices.

U.S. WTI futures jumped 1.35 percent to $53.24 a barrel, while benchmark Brent crude soared 1.5 percent to $58.23 a barrel.

Traders remain hopeful of more OPEC production cuts despite the International Energy Agency (IEA) cutting its global oil demand growth forecasts for this year and next, citing trade war tensions.

In its closely-watched monthly oil report, the energy agency said it expects oil demand growth to reach 1.1 million barrels per day (b/d) in 2019 and 1.3 million b/d in 2020.

That constitutes a downward revision of 100,000 b/d for this year and 50,000 b/d for next year.

OPEC and its allies have agreed to cut production by 1.2 million b/d through to the end of the first quarter of 2020 to rebalance the market.

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