Slight Increase Reported in Oil Prices

Oil prices both in the U.S. and in London were up slightly in Thursday’s trading.

West Texas Intermediate crude rose 23-cents to settle at $61.19 a barrel on April contracts on the New York Mercantile Exchange. The 23-cent increase represented a hike of 0.38%.

Brent crude in London’s ICE futures also rose 23 cents and settled at $65.12 a barrel for May contracts, which resulted in an increase of 0.25%.

Natural gas dropped 0.05 cents to settle at $2.68.

The slight increase in oil prices came as the International  Energy Agency warned of an impending shortfall in global oil supplies. The Paris-based IEA also indicated a threatening situation in Venezeula’s oil sector could worsen a worldwide supply deficit forecasted for later in the year.

Despite the IEA’s gloomy estimate of things in the South American country, shale oil production in the U.S. is surging. U.S. crude production rose 10.4 million barrels a day last week.

But the IEA increased its estimate of global oil demand growth in 2018 by 90,000 barrels a day to 1.5 million a day.