Rise in U.S. oil rigs push Brent oil below $62

US output soars, oil falls to 6-week low

Crude Oil Prices Have Cratered As Well

The number of rigs drilling for crude in the United States jumped to the highest in nearly six months, and US output breached 10 million barrels a day in November, the highest in more than 40 years.

The falls come amid a rout in global share markets as inflation fears grip investors.

Brent futures were down 30 cents at $64.51 a barrel by 0925 GMT.

The American benchmark, West Texas Intermediate, hit $58.09 a barrel - a 5 percent loss that marked its lowest level since December 22.

Both contracts have fallen more than 9 percent from this year's high point in late January.

NYMEX WTI crude futures for March delivery settled at $59.20 on Friday, down $1.95, capping a week of losses for the benchmark that culminated in the largest weekly decline in two years.

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"It has now become painfully clear for beleaguered oil bulls that the early-year rally was not justified", PVM Oil Associates' Stephen Brennock said in a note.

Supply-glut concerns grew when the Energy Information Administration (EIA) data showed on Wednesday a build in U.S. crude inventories and products as well as higher refinery run rates.

First, sharp drops in USA imports of eroded the biggest market that producers like OPEC had relied on for many years.

Oil prices were also dented by the restart of the Forties pipeline in the North Sea, following an outage the previous day that had sent prices higher when it was announced.

OPEC and other producers, including Russian Federation, have cut production since January 2017 to force down global inventories, but these cuts have been offset by rising USA oil production. The group extended the production cut deal, which began in January 2017, until the end of 2018.

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