Crude under $100 a barrel as Opec meets


Crude prices consolidated under $100 a barrel in the week that the world’s leading oil producers gathered for an Opec meeting in Vienna.

Concerns about falling demand amid the euro zone crisis and continuing increased production by Saudi Arabia has weighed on crude oil prices in recent weeks.

With the weekend’s Greek elections looming, analysts said it was one of the few times when delegates at the oil cartel meeting had to keep an eye on the political situation in the euro zone.

“Since when has Opec had to pay attention to Greece elections?” asked Amrita Sen, oil analyst at Barclays.

Brent traded within a narrow range as traders were reluctant to take large positions ahead of the Greeks going to the polls, while also bearing in mind next week’s talks between western diplomats and Iran over its nuclear programme. Nevertheless, oil prices fluctuated this week on statements by Opec members positioning themselves ahead of the meeting on Thursday. – (Copyright The Financial Times Ltd 2012)