Rouhani first deputy: U.S. can not stop export of Iranian oil

Tehran's oil refinery supervisor Jafar Jaleh Rafati works at a unit of the refinery south of the capital Tehran Iran Monday Dec. 22 2014

Iran Reshuffles Economic Team Ahead of US Oil Ban

Consultancy JBC Energy said the oil price weakness was "probably driven by the wider negative market sentiment amid speculation about additional us tariffs on Chinese imports, should upcoming talks fail to produce the desired results".

Front-month Brent crude oil futures LCOc1 were at 77.96 dollars a barrel, up 35 cents, or 0.2 per cent, from their last close.

Iran began selling crude oil to private companies for export on Sunday, part of a strategy to counter US sanctions which come into effect on November 4 and aim to stop the country's key crude exports, the oil ministry's news website SHANA reported.

Oil held losses near $67 a barrel on speculation that an escalating trade dispute between the USA and China will dampen global growth at a time when American crude inventories are growing. EIA also forecast that total global liquid fuels inventories to decrease by 200,000 barrels per day in 2018, followed by an increase of 280,000 barrels per day in 2019.

Earlier in the session, Brent reached a session low of $75.09 a barrel, the lowest since August 24.

Prices were pressured as USA inventories were expected to rise for a sixth straight week as other top producers Saudi Arabia and Russian Federation signaled potential output increases.

Following the declines, many investors have made a decision to reduce their exposure, an analysis showed. In February, the speculative long positions were at their highest.

"The hedge funds really abandoned the long side of the market and there's some short-selling going on this perception that perhaps the economy is slowing", said Phil Flynn, analyst at Price Futures Group in Chicago.

Human Rights Watch Calls on North Korea to End Pervasive Sexual Abuse
A third woman said sexual abuse was considered shameful for women because people thought they must have brought it on themselves. A second woman said a detention centre guard tried to rape her but moved away after she said her body was crawling with lice.

State-owned oil companies have already placed an order for 1.25 million tonnes of Iranian oil for November.

However, the effects of the US withdrawal from the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) in May, the resumption of Iran sanctions and the potential response from other countries pose significant uncertainty to the forecast.

Oil prices dipped on Tuesday, dragged down by concerns that the Sino-U.S. trade dispute will dent economic growth and by signs of rising global supply despite upcoming sanctions against Iran.

Around 300,000 bpd of crude oil previously pumped and exported in the Kirkuk province to the Turkish port of Ceyhan have been shut in since the Iraqi federal government moved in October past year to take control over the oil fields in Kirkuk from Kurdish forces.

Iran first began to enter into transactions for the sale of oil on the Tehran oil Bourse, which is part of a strategy to counter the USA sanctions that will enter into force on 4 November.

The sanctions have triggered a black-market fueled by Iranian tankers - or "ghost ships" - that dismantle their vessel tracking systems, according to regional observers, making it extremely hard to estimate how much Iranian oil is on the market at any given moment.

In the coming weeks, traders keep a close eye on USA sanctions on Iranian crude exports. -China trade war are stirring demand-growth concerns. Concerns about the gap in crude oil supply caused by USA sanctions on Iran have fueled spike of crude oil prices in the past few months. Saying that the United States won't sell crude oil from the Strategic Petroleum Reserve (SPR), Secretary Perry also noted that he was "comfortable that the world supply can absorb the sanctions that are coming".

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