UNITED STATES (OBSERVATORY) – Oil prices rose on Friday to stabilize after a slide earlier in the session sparked criticism from US President Donald Trump of OPEC’s role in pushing world crude prices up.
Global Brent crude futures closed up 28 cents, or 0.4 percent, to settle at $ 74.06 a barrel, while US LME futures closed up 7 cents at $ 68.40 a barrel.
Trump accused the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) on Friday of raising oil prices “artificially” more than a year after a deal between OPEC and independent producers cut global crude stocks.
Trump’s criticism drew reactions from oil-producing nations as crude prices plummeted following its comments.
“OPEC seems to be returning the ball again,” Trump wrote in a tweet on Twitter. “With record oil everywhere, including the most heavily loaded ships at sea, oil prices are artificially high and this is not good and will not be acceptable.”
In response to Trump’s tirade, OPEC Secretary-General Mohamed Barkindo said the organization did not have a target price level but was working to restore stability to oil markets.
Earlier this week, Brent and US crude hit their highest levels since November 2014 at $ 74.75 and $ 69.56 a barrel respectively, supported by geopolitical risks and tight supply.
The two benchmark indexes both end the week with gains above 1 percent.