Oil prices were little changed on Friday, with Brent on track for its third week of gains amid supply concerns should the United States reimpose sanctions on Iran.
Oil steadied on Monday, reducing early losses after Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said he would make an announcement regarding the nuclear deal with Iran, later on today.
The decision of whether to restore the sanctions on Iran that were lifted after an agreement over its disputed nuclear program will be made by US President Donald Trump on May 12.
Worldwide oil benchmark, Brent crude, on Monday hit $75 per barrel and rose further amid growing geopolitical tensions in the world.
"It's only Trump who wants to back out of the deal, but he wants to back out of so many deals ..."
Oil fell as the US oil rig count rose for a fourth week, but was still poised for a second monthly advance.
Crude rallied 5.6 percent this month amid heightened geopolitical tensions and Trump's indications he may scrap the 2015 nuclear deal that eased sanctions against Iran in exchange for a halt to nuclear weapons research.
A rise in U.S. government borrowing costs to their highest since 2013 this week has tempered some investor appetite for risk, but analysts said they believed Brent crude may have another attempt at marking new 2018 highs above $75 a barrel. The more-active July contract traded at $73.16. The global benchmark crude traded at a $6.43 premium to June WTI.
USA drillers added five oil rigs in the week to April 27, bringing the total count to 825, the highest since March 2015, General Electric's Baker Hughes energy services firm said.
If the USA does reimpose sanctions, that would be bullish for oil prices, analysts say, coinciding with a rapid decline in OPEC production largely due to declines in Angola and Venezuela, which is in the midst of an economic and social crisis. Only Russia now produces more, at around 11 million bpd. At the same time, OPEC-led production cuts have continued to tighten global markets, despite record-setting USA crude output. US crude stockpiles probably increased by 1.25 million barrels, according to the median estimate of analysts surveyed by Bloomberg.
Hedge fund managers have amassed a near-record position of 1.405 billion barrels in petroleum and show no signs of rushing to take profits despite the rise in prices to their highest level since 2014.
USA drillers added five oil rigs in the week to April 27, bringing the total count to 825, the highest level since March 2015, General Electric's Baker Hughes energy services firm said.