Oil prices drop amid U.S. inventory data, OPEC+ decision

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NEW YORK, Aug. 3 (Xinhua) -- Oil prices dipped on Wednesday after data showed a jump in U.S. crude stockpiles and OPEC+ agreed to a small production increase for September.

The West Texas Intermediate for September delivery lost 3.76 U.S. dollars, or 4 percent, to settle at 90.66 dollars a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange. Brent crude for October delivery decreased 3.76 dollars, or 3.7 percent, to close at 96.78 dollars a barrel on the London ICE Futures Exchange.

The U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) said the nation's crude inventories increased by 4.5 million barrels during the week ending July 29. Analysts surveyed by S&P Global Commodity Insights had forecast a 1.7 million barrel drop in crude supplies.

The EIA publication also showed an increase of 0.2 million barrels in total motor gasoline inventories last week and a decrease of 2.4 million barrels in distillate fuel stocks.

Meanwhile, the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) and its allies, collectively known as OPEC+, on Wednesday decided to increase production by 100,000 barrels per day for September.

Meeting participants "noted that the severely limited availability of excess capacity necessitates utilizing it with great caution in response to severe supply disruptions," OPEC said in a statement following the meeting.

"With the exception of Saudi Arabia and the UAE (United Arab Emirates), all other group members are already producing around their production capacity, in our view," UBS analysts said Wednesday in a note.

"We believe this will effectively result in a production increase of just one-third of the agreed volumes in September," they said. Enditem

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