Oil mixed, but erratic, on U.S. weather impacts and demand scenario

US Hurricanes Affecting Oil Prices, Saudi Could Cut Output

In the wake of the hurricanes Harvey and Irma, oil demand is expected to drop by some 900,000 bpd this month, Goldman Sachs said on Monday.

Irma, the second major storm in the USA region in a fortnight, made landfall in Florida on Sunday as a Category 4 hurricane, knocking out power to almost 5.8 million homes and businesses in the state. It gradually lost strength and weakened to a tropical storm by Monday morning as it headed towards Georgia.

Brent crude oil futures settled up 6 cents, or 0.1 percent, to $53.84 a barrel while U.S. West Texas Intermediate crude rose by 59 cents, or 1.2 percent, to $48.07.

The price for Brent crude oil was up 0.46 percent at 9:18 a.m. EDT to $54.13 per barrel.

Economists at the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries said in their monthly market report for September that total commercial oil stocks for members of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development was 195 million barrels above the five-year average and 123 million barrels above the seasonal norm.

USA crude stockpiles likely rose by 4.82 million barrels last week, according to a Bloomberg survey ahead of Energy Information Administration data released Wednesday.

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Losses were capped by weekend talks between Saudi Arabia's energy minister and counterparts over a possible extension to a pact to cut global oil supplies beyond next March. "Due to the demand-focused impact of Irma, we find that, by the end of September, gasoline and distillate stocks respectively are only -8 million barrels and -13 million barrels lower respectively than they otherwise would have been".

The latest inventories data will come back into focus with the API data due for release after Tuesday's NY close with the latest EIA data on Wednesday. It is also costing them market share to rivals, including partner Russian Federation and the U.S.

The hurricanes have rattled energy markets, with Irma shutting Florida fuel stations and ports and Harvey earlier halting about one-quarter of the nation's refining capacity.

The EIA lowered its US crude output forecast for next year to 9.84 million barrels a day from 9.91 million a day estimated in August, according to its Short-Term Energy Outlook.

A further extension for at least three more months beyond March is now being discussed before Opec meets again in November.

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