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Oil maintains its strength on unbroken supply cuts

Oil markets kept stable on Friday backed up by positive sentiments as OPEC-led supply cuts aided in narrowing the market. However, analysts are concerned that the cuts would need to be prolonged to oppose increasing U.S. output. U.S. production has spiked by above 13 percent since mid- 2016 to 9.6 million bpd.

Global benchmark for oil prices, Brent Futures LCOc1, were traded at $60.87 a barrel as of 0013 GMT, up by 25 cents or 0.4 percent from their last close. Since Brent’s 2017 lows last June, it has increased by about 37 percent.

(WTI) U.S. West Texas Intermediate crude CLc1 was traded at $54.91 per barrel, up by 0.7 percent or 37 cents. WTI is approximately 30 percent higher than its 2017 low in June. 

Asian shares soared in early trade

Asian shares increased in early trade on Friday after U.S. stocks closed mixed. Investors took the release of House Republicans’ tax-reform plan and President Trump’s nomination of Jerome Powell into consideration.

Kospi of South Korea went higher by 0.22 percent as automakers scored gains. Hyundai Motors increased 1.88 percent while Kia Motors went up 0.71 percent.

Nikkei rose 0.53 percent while S&P/ASX 200 increased 0.47 percent, with gold miners reaping gains in early trade. HSI rose 0.20 percent. Kingsgate climbed 6.82 percent and Newcrest Mining increased 2.5 percent.

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