Oil prices fall, as Kwacha holds firm

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OIL prices fell on Friday after the United States reported its crude output hit a record 12 million barrels per day, says Barclays Bank Zambia daily market report.

According to the bank, this move undermined efforts by Middle East-dominated producer club Organisation of the Petroleum Exporting Countries to withhold supply and tighten global markets.

“That means U.S. crude output has soared by almost 2.5 million barrels per day since the start of 2018, and by a whopping 5 million bpd since 2013.

“America is the only country to ever reach 12 million bpd of production. Analysts say U.S. output will rise further and that oil firms will export more oil to sell off surplus stocks,” said the bank.

On the local market, the bank indicated that the Kwacha last week traded steady with the buyers and sellers of dollars almost evenly matched.

The bank said decent supply from the mining sector was witnessed which saw the Kwacha touch a high of K11.875/11.925 per dollar.

“However, demand from the Agriculture sector seen in afternoon session pushed the Kwacha to close the day at K11.915/11.965 on the bid and offer respectively.

“The local unit is still likely to trade on the front foot as corporates convert dollars to settle their month end obligations,” said Barclays Bank Zambia.

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