US oil prices rise as Gulf platforms shut ahead of hurricane

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Iran's exports and oil production collapsed in 2012 after Barack Obama, then USA president, led a global coalition to curb purchases to try to force the Persian country into restricting its nuclear program.

The price of Brent went up by about 60 cents to sell at $78.24 a barrel, while US crude went up by 15 cents to trade at $69.95.

Crude oil "prices could reach $80 and higher in the short term", the bank said, although it added that despite these developments global supply may exceed demand next year.

The latest move also comes as major Japanese banks prepare to halt transactions related to Iran, which will make it hard for distributors to process payments even if they continue buying Iranian oil. "If there is a serious trade disagreement between the US and China, the Chinese consumption of energy will be impacted negatively, from our point of view and the ability to produce and export will be impacted", he said at the World Heavy Oil Congress.

Russia's crude and condensate production averaged 11.21 million b/d in August, dipping 8,000 b/d from July, when the country cranked up production significantly, according to preliminary data released Sunday by the Central Dispatching Unit, the energy ministry's statistics arm.

The moves by the two top buyers of Iranian crude indicate that the Islamic Republic may not be fully cut off from global oil markets from November, when United States sanctions against Tehran's petroleum sector are due to start, it said.

Many worldwide shippers have stopped loading Iranian oil as USA financial sanctions against Tehran prevents them from insuring its cargoes.

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Crude is up 9% since mid-August as WTI flirts with $70 per barrel.

"Iranian production is already showing signs of decline, falling by 150,000 bpd last month".

He forecasts an increase of as much as 30 percent in the U.S. WTI prices by the winter, with a break of the $75 per barrel level within a few weeks.

Iran has repeatedly said it will resume high-level uranium enrichment if the 2015 agreement - which stringently limits its nuclear programme in return for sanctions relief - falls apart.

USA light crude was up $1.25 a barrel or 1.79 percent at $71.03, the highest level in nearly two months. He stated that it was not yet clear whether such economic headwinds would be able to topple oil prices.

The surge in Iran exports during May, June and July cut Japan's year-to-date decrease in Iranian oil imports to just 1% from a year earlier, compared with a cumulative 13% drop over January-April.

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