Crude oil prices fell back into negative territory Friday after midweek gains following status quo statements from OPEC and little gains in the eurozone.
Brent crude oil prices moved slightly lower in early Friday trading to sell at $53.10 per barrel. West Texas Intermediate, the U.S. benchmark, followed suit to fall modestly to $48.18. Early week dips in crude oil prices that greeted a crash on the Chinese stock exchange rebounded midweek as U.S. inventory data suggested an increase in demand.
Crude oil prices are about 50 percent lower than in June 2014 as markets trend toward the supply side in part because of gains in U.S. oil production. Early July statements from the U.S. Energy Information Administration said U.S. output should dip through early 2016, though members of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries show no signs of letting up.
OPEC leaders met this week in Moscow to discuss long-term prospects for the crude oil market. The 12-member production group said any cuts in its output would do little to pull markets in either direction.