US oil output continues to fall
US oil production continued to fall last week as weak prices and brimming stockpiles hit domestic producers, government data showed Wednesday.
The Department of Energy's report for the week to April 15 showed a 24,000-barrel fall in production to 8.95 million barrels a day.
It was the second straight week below the nine million barrel a day threshold and more than 600,000 barrels below the mid-2015 peak of just over 9.6 million barrels a day.
The data came days after a meeting on the oversupplied market between OPEC and non-OPEC producers, including Russia but not the United States, failed to produce an agreement on capping production.
The data showed that even if other producers are not reacting to the crash in crude prices, US drillers are.
The department's Energy Information Agency forecasts that US production will fall steadily to average 8.6 million barrels a day this year, down by 800,000 barrels from last year, and 8.0 million barrels a day in 2017.
Despite the lower output, the EIA said Wednesday that US commercial stockpiles of crude remain at near-record levels. Stockpiles rose by 2.1 million barrels last week to 538.6 million barrels.
Gasoline and other refined products also remained at very high levels, adding more downward pressure to prices.
West Texas Intermediate, the US crude market benchmark, fell by around one percent Wednesday to $40.65 a barrel.
© 2016 AFP