EghtesadOnline: A rally in Iran's oil prices cooled in the week to January 19 as the country's light crude settled below $69 a barrel in the week.
Each barrel of Iran's light crude oil traded at $68.81, down 45 cents over the week, as Iran Heavy, one of the country's main export grades, fell 60 cents to $66.22 per barrel, Shana reported, citing a report by the Oil Ministry.
Light and heavy crudes have averaged $68.62 and $65.48 per barrel so far in 2018, the report said.
Light crude is typically priced higher than heavier grades because of being easier to process and yielding products with higher value-added, according to Financial Tribune.
The price of OPEC basket of fourteen crudes stood at $68.46 a barrel on Thursday, compared with $67.61 the previous day, according to the latest OPEC Secretariat calculations.
According to OPEC’s latest monthly report published on January 18, Iran Heavy traded at $60.86 per barrel in December, up $1.6 or 2.7% from November.
The Iranian crude averaged $51.71 a barrel in 2017, up 30% in the previous year that saw prices plummet to their lowest levels in more than a decade, the report said. Oil fell from above $110 a barrel in mid-2014 to below $30 in early 2016.
According to Reuters, Brent crude futures settled up 10 cents at $70.52 per barrel on Friday after the contract climbed to as high as $71.28, its highest since 2014. US West Texas Intermediate crude futures closed at $66.14 a barrel, up 63 cents, or nearly 1%. On Thursday, they also reached their highest since December 2014, at $66.66.
Global markets were supported last year by an extension of a production cut agreement between OPEC and several non-members through the end of 2018 as well as tensions in the Middle East and supply disruptions in the US and elsewhere.
The supply cut deal, led by Saudi Arabia and Russia, is aimed at removing about 1.8 million barrels per day of crude from the market to reduce global inventories and lift prices.