Crude oil futures ended little changed on Monday, with traders appearing a bit uncertain about the impact of U.S. sanctions on Iran on global crude supply.
Traders were also closely following the developments with regard to the ongoing U.S.-Saudi Arabia spat.
The U.S. crude inventory data, due on Wednesday, may well set the tone for crude’s direction during the later part of this week. In the past four weeks, U.S. crude stockpiles rose, and on a couple of occasions, the jump was significantly pronounced and much more than expected as well.
Crude oil futures for December, the most active contracts, ended up $0.08, or 0.1%, at $69.36 a barrel.
Meanwhile crude oil futures for November ended up $0.05, or 0.07%, at $69.17 a barrel, on expiration day. On Friday, crude oil futures for November ended up $0.47, or 0.7%, at $69.12 a barrel.
Fears over possible drop in crude supply post implementation of sanctions on Iran that come into force early November, have eased a bit thanks to recent reports from EIA and OPEC about comfortable supply levels.
On Friday, Baker Hughes, the U.S. oil services firm, reported that U.S. oil rig count was at 3-1/2 year highs as on October 19.
Meanwhile, the Saudi Oil Minister Khalid al-Falih has reportedly said that the kingdom has no intention of an oil embargo on Western consumers, despite the current crisis following allegations that it murdered journalist Jamal Khashoggi. The minister added that Saudi Arabia would strive to increase supply.