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Oil Prices Retreat as Trades Weigh U.S. Hurricane Impact

Oil Prices Retreat as Trades Weigh U.S. Hurricane Impact

Oil prices fell on Tuesday as traders assessed the impact of Hurricane Irma on demand against the resumption of refinery operations in the aftermath of Hurricane Harvey that should result in more crude oil processing.

The Brent crude traded down 14 cents or 0.3 percent at $53.70 per barrel from its previous finish. Meanwhile, the U.S. WTI crude fell by 12 cents or 0.3 percent at $47.95 per barrel.

U.S. refineries have begun to resume operations. Motiva Enterprises, the biggest U.S. refinery, has restarted production at the start of the week after being offline for around two weeks as Harvey devastated the U.S. Gulf coast. After Harvey, Hurricane Irma hit Florida on Sunday.

Analysts estimate that U.S. crude inventories likely increased in the previous week in the wake of the hurricane impact, while refined product stockpiles were projected to have fallen.

The API data is slated to be released later today while the EIA report will be released on Tuesday.

Meanwhile, amid concerns of global oversupply, Saudi Arabia's Energy Minister Khalid al-Falih had discussed with his counterparts in Venezuela and Kazakh the possibility of prolonging a deal to cap production beyond March 2018.

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