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Oil falls below $70 as Saudi Arabia cuts crude price to US and Asia

The price of Brent crude oil fell below $70 a barrel today following Saudi Arabia's decision to cut its monthly prices for crude sold to the US and Asia.

Reuters reported that the January Brent crude contract declined 18 cents to $69.46 a barrel, while US crude was down 17 cents at $66.64.

Iraq will export more oil in 2015 after Baghdad signed a temporary agreement with the Kurdish regional government.

Libya is set to resume operations at its El Sharara oilfield after a pipeline blockage was repaired.

Analysts in a Reuters monthly poll estimate that oil prices will rebound in the next two years after hitting five-year lows.

The poll revealed that Brent will average $82.50 a barrel in 2015 and its premium to US crude CL-LCO1=R will reduce to $4.50 a barrel, reports Reuters.

Worldwide oil and gas exploration projects, worth more than $150bn, may be put on hold in 2015 due to declining oil prices, which in turn may reduce supplies by the end of 2020.

Heartwood Investment Management investment manager in London Jade Fu was quoted by the news agency as saying that lower prices could support global economic growth by boosting consumer purchasing power in the US.

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