(Removes paragraph on Saudi Arabia offering to reduce oil
output as was based on September story)
* Brent crude up 0.2 pct, U.S. crude rises 0.1 pct
* Speculators raise US crude net long positions to record
By Naveen Thukral
SINGAPORE, Feb 27 Oil prices edged higher on
Monday, with Brent oil set to rise for five out of seven
sessions as a global supply glut appears to ease, but rising
U.S. production limited gains.
Brent crude oil climbed 0.2 percent to $56.09 a
barrel, while U.S. West Texas Intermediate added 0.1
percent to $54.04 a barrel.
Oil prices tumbled on Friday after U.S. Energy Information
Administration data showed U.S. crude inventories rose for a
seventh straight week.
But the market has been supported within a tight $4 to $5
range since November, when the Organization of the Petroleum
Exporting Countries (OPEC) and other producers agreed to cut
"EIA data showed stocks rose 564,000 barrels to 518.7
million last week," ANZ said in a note.
"However, it was the lowest increase over the past couple of
months. If this trend of lower imports and smaller gains in
inventories persists over the coming weeks, it would suggest
that the OPEC led production cuts are starting to have an
OPEC's record compliance with the deal has surprised the
market, and the biggest laggards, the United Arab Emirates and
Iraq, have pledged to catch up with their targets.
The International Energy Agency put OPEC's average
compliance at a record 90 percent in January, and based on a
Reuters average of production surveys, it stands at 88 percent.
Money managers raised their net long U.S. crude futures and
options positions in the week to Feb. 21, to the highest on
record, based on data going back to at least 2009, the U.S.
Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) said on Friday.
"The market is trading in a range. OPEC supply cuts are
putting a base under the market at this stage," said Ric
Spooner, chief market analyst at CMC Markets in Sydney.
On the technical front, Brent oil may break support at
$55.93 per barrel and fall more towards the next support at
$54.81, as its consolidation within a wedge has not completed,
according to Reuters analyst Wang Tao.
U.S. oil may slide further to support at $53.37 per barrel,
as suggested by a Fibonacci projection analysis and a rising
(Reporting by Naveen Thukral; Editing by Joseph Radford)