Oil price defies gravity

David Knott London davidk@ogjonline.com Like a magician's levitation act, the behavior of crude oil prices has appeared to defy gravity since producers slated output cuts in March. At the close of London trading on Apr. 19, both dated Brent crude and June delivery Brent stood at $16.09/ bbl, a rare equilibrium and the first time in more than 1 year that Brent has topped $16/bbl. While early in the year, Brent futures prices wallowed around $10/bbl, the current market strength resulted from a deal between the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries and Mexico, Norway, Oman, and Russia to cut output further by 2.1 million b/d (OGJ, Mar. 29, 1999, p. ...

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