Oil settles below $60 a barrel

U.S. benchmark oil settled below $60 a barrel on Thursday – the first time in three sessions – as ample global supplies and indications that oil producers will continue boosting output weighed in on prices.

Brent’s front-month June contract is headed to expiration.

Brent June crude dropped 22 cents, settling at $66.59 a barrel, while July Brent was down 57 cents, settling at $66.70.

After a smaller than expected increase in US inventories, natural-gas prices settled above $3 per million British thermal units.

oil well

Overall bearish supple situation has “not markedly changed”

Jason Rotman, president of Lido Isle Advisors, said:

“The overall bearish supply situation still has not markedly changed, so market participants are looking at any price above $60 to sell” West Texas Intermediate oil.

According to a report by The Energy Information Administration, U.S. crude stockpiles dropped for a second straight week, while domestic oil production increased.

What’s the future of oil production output?

Production data has been closely watched by traders. Based on data from Baker Hughes the number of rigs drilling for oil has dropped and production levels were expected to significantly decline.

Output from seven U.S. shale plays are expected to drop in June, according to the EIA.

However, analysts believe that the rise in prices above $60 per barrel could drive producers to increase output.