Oversupply Pushes Oil Lower

Oversupply Pushes Oil LowerOversupply Pushes Oil Lower

Oil fell on Tuesday as rising output from the Middle East renewed concerns about global oversupply while economic data painted a negative backdrop for the outlook for demand.

Brent crude futures traded 40 cents lower at $45.43 a barrel, retreating from earlier gains. US crude futures were down 53 cents at $44.25 a barrel, Reuters reported.

Iraq said its oil shipments from southern fields averaged 3.364 million barrels per day in April, up from 3.286 million in March.

Production from top exporter Saudi Arabia was 10.15 million bpd in April, but sources said it could soon return to a near-record level of 10.5 million bpd. Iran is also raising output after its emergence from western sanctions in January and has increased exports to almost 2 million bpd from a little more than 1 million bpd at the start of the year.

US production has dipped from a peak of about 9.6 million bpd in June 2015 to less than 9 million bpd now, government data show.

That had helped lift crude by nearly 70% from decade lows hit early this year and analysts said further sporadic price falls are likely, given the spike in Brent crude's biggest monthly gain in seven years last month.