Geopolitical Worries Lift Oil Prices

Geopolitical Worries Lift Oil PricesGeopolitical Worries Lift Oil Prices

Oil prices edged up on Monday on geopolitical concerns after Friday's deadly attacks in Paris, but gains were muted due to a global crude glut.

"Some risk premium is factored into the market after the terror attacks in Paris. We had an oversold market, so it is a technical recovery as well," said Frank Klumpp, oil analyst at Stuttgart-based Landesbank Baden-Wuerttemberg, Reuters reported.

Front-month Brent crude prices were up 34 cents at $44.81 a barrel. US futures traded 36 cents higher at $41.10 a barrel.

An OPEC delegate from a Persian Gulf producing country said he believed that in the mid-term, oil prices could get some support due to rising tensions, especially if the international community takes more steps to reduce smuggling of oil and hits oil facilities under IS control in Syria and Iraq.

But oil and other commodities could also come under renewed pressure on fears the attacks will further slow the global economy. Many analysts also continue to believe prices will remain under pressure due to abundant stocks of oil and slowing economic growth.

Oil prices have dropped more than 60% since June last year as high production and inventories have coincided with an economic slowdown in Asia, particularly in China but also Japan, which slipped back into recession in the third quarter.

"The fact that both crude oil and combined crude and product stocks are near record levels is a reason for concern," Barclays bank said in a research note.

Baker Hughes data showed the first rise in the US oil rig count in 11 weeks last Friday, while the International Energy Agency said there was a record 3 billion barrels of crude and oil products in tanks worldwide.