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Oil prices rise, US rigs fall

Oil prices rose on Monday as the number of United States rigs fell for a sixth week, while investors waited for Chinese trade data to be published later this week for clues whether the world’s second biggest economy and oil consumer was slowing down further.
US West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures CLc1 were trading at $US50.03 per barrel up 40 cents from their last settlement.
Internationally traded Brent futures LCOc1 were up 39 cents at $53.04 a barrel.
US drillers removed nine oil rigs in the week ended Oct. 9, bringing the total rig count down to 605, oil services company Baker Hughes Inc (BHI.N) said late on Friday.
That total was the least since July, 2010.
Drillers had cut a total of 61 rigs over the prior five weeks.
Since hitting an all-time high of 1609 during this week a year ago, weekly rig count reductions have averaged 20.
“The current rig count is pointing to United States production declining sequentially between 2Q15 and 4Q15 by 255,000 barrels per day,” Goldman Sachs in response to the data said.
The bank, however, added that “a rapid drawdown of the observed backlog of uncompleted wells could lead to higher production later this year and in 2016”.
The slowing United States drilling activity has pushed up WTI crude prices about 11 per cent this month or almost 30 per cent above their most recent low-point but they remain 20 per cent below their 2015 highs reached. – Reuters
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