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10.12.2014 16:40

Brent crude drops below $65 as OPEC sees less demand

Brent fell to less than $65 a barrel for the first time in more than five years after OPEC cut the forecast for how much crude oil it will need to provide in 2015 to the lowest since 2003.

Futures in London declined as much as 2.8 percent to $64.98, the lowest level since Sept. 29, 2009, extending this year's decline to 41 percent. OPEC lowered its projection for 2015 by about 300,000 barrels a day to 28.9 million a day in its monthly report today. That's about 1.15 million less than the group's 12 members pumped last month.

Brent collapsed 16 percent in London after OPEC agreed to leave its production limit unchanged at 30 million barrels a day on Nov. 27, resisting calls from members including Venezuela to cut output to stabilize prices. The decision prompted the biggest one-day decline in prices in more than three years.

"Another target bites the dust," Eugen Weinberg, head of commodities research at Frankfurt-based Commerzbank AG, said by phone before the OPEC report was published. "We are still searching for the bottom, and may not find it until OPEC changes policy or low prices begin to eat into production."

Brent for January settlement decreased $1.65, or 2.5 percent, to $65.19 a barrel at 10:08 a.m. New York time on the London-based ICE Futures Europe exchange. Prices slumped 7.2 percent this month after a drop of 18 percent in November.

WTI for January delivery fell as much as 3.1 percent to $61.82 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange, the lowest since July 2009.

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