The Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) has decided to maintain its production levels for at least another six months, Saudi Arabia’s Oil Minister Ali al-Naimi told reporters Friday.
The cartel maintained its collective output production level at 30 million barrels per day, which could continue to weigh on oil prices this year, as oversupply has dominated markets following the group’s decision not to cut production at its last meeting in November.
Both Brent and West Texas Intermediate oil prices spiked on the news that the organization’s output target would remain the same. Brent rose to trade around $62.60 per barrel and WTI cost $58.40 at around 12.40 p.m. London time – an increase of around 0.5 percent for both benchmarks.
The price of oil has rebounded significantly since hitting lows of $45 a barrel in January, giving officials meeting in Vienna little reason to meddle with their target, which is likely to continue to hit the U.S. shale oil industry.
OPEC’s next meeting is scheduled for December 4th, Naimi said, who added that the two-hour meeting had been amicable.