Oil prices are expected to fall for a third consecutive week due to signs of slowing demand and the upcoming OPEC meeting. Brent crude futures for January rose by 1.1% to $80.85 a barrel, while U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures for December increased by 1% to $76.52. Both contracts are projected to decline by approximately 5% for the week. Commerzbank noted that concerns about demand have replaced fears of production outages related to the Middle East conflict. Weak Chinese economic data and reduced demand for Saudi Arabian oil from Chinese refiners have further contributed to worries about faltering demand. The OPEC+ meeting on November 26 will determine whether Saudi Arabia extends its voluntary production cut of 1 million barrels per day. RBC Capital Markets analyst Helima Croft believes that the chances of an extension are increasing due to market concerns about Chinese demand and the broader macro outlook. Citi analysts expect downward pressure on prices to ease and anticipate a recovery after prices hit their lowest point since July. They also predict that prices will consolidate, with support coming from easing refinery maintenance and a shift in the risk-reward for investors.
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