Oil prices have edged down this morning after data from the American Petroleum Institute (API) showed the first rise in US crude stockpiles for six weeks.
The API figures, released yesterday, showed a 2.7m barrels build last week. Analysts had expected a 2m barrel build.
Brent crude, the global benchmark, was down 0.21 per cent this morning to $51.70, while its US equivalent West Texas Intermediate crude was down 0.44 per cent – and back below $50 – to $49.96.
"Crude oil prices have once again taken a tumble following American Petroleum Institute figures showing the first US crude oil inventory build in six weeks and the largest single increase for six months," said Henry Croft, research analyst at Accendo Markets.
"Furthermore, fresh scepticism surrounding a future Opec production freeze/cut deal emerged as reports of infighting from members (most notably Iraq and Venezuela) over who will bear the brunt of cuts come to the fore."
Yesterday the black stuff slumped after the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (Opec) pointed to a larger surplus next year.
Opec's monthly report showed that it pumped 33.39m barrels per day (bpd) last month, up 220,000 bpd from August. This was mainly due to increased production from Nigeria, Libya and Iran.
Both benchmarks had been in positive territory earlier in the day, after rising to their highest level in 2016 earlier this week.