Iran to only trade with countries that import its oil

Iran to only trade with countries that import its oil

US crude futures were down 58 cents at $73.56 per barrel by 12:00 p.m. EDT (1600 GMT), still in sight of Tuesday's 3-1/2-year high above $75.

August West Texas Intermediate crude, the US benchmark, on the New York Mercantile Exchange, fell 55 cents, or 0.8 percent to $72.39 a barrel.

Oil was mixed on Friday, with short-covering pushing up USA crude futures while Brent slipped on global trade tensions and increased Saudi production. "Reduce pricing now!" the United States leader tweeted.

Iran on Saturday accused US President Donald Trump of destabilising the oil market with his flurry of tweets taking aim at the OPEC cartel.

Tehran blames rising prices on USA sanctions imposed on Iran and Venezuela, founding members of the cartel.

"Further declines in USA crude oil inventories and the significant outage in Libyan oil supply are helping to keep a floor under the market", said Harry Tchilinguirian, head of commodity markets strategy at BNP Paribas SA in London.

Saudi Arabia has wanted to sell shares in Aramco to bring in foreign investment to diversify its economy, but legal concerns about listing in places like London or NY have presented complications.

More news: Former NBA, UCLA Player Killed In Shootout With Police

US crude stockpiles rose 1.3 million barrels last week, according to US Energy Information Administration data.

Gasoline stocks fell 1.5 million barrels, compared with expectations in a Reuters poll for a 817,000-barrel drop.

"The OPEC Monopoly must remember that gas prices are up & they are doing little to help", Trump wrote on his personal Twitter account. "Because the oil market is already in tight supply due to the numerous outages, this would drive worldwide prices (Brent) further up", Commerzbank said in a note. Global benchmark Brent LCOc1 was down 39 cents at $77 a barrel.

Oil fell on Thursday after United States government data showed an unexpected build in crude oil stockpiles.

After all the tough talk by the U.S. about countries cutting oil purchases from Iran to zero by November 4, India will have a chance to discuss the issue of crucial energy imports when a team of officials from the state and treasury departments visits the country this month.

China's Commerce Ministry spokesman Gao Feng said America's tariffs will backfire and damage the world economy because more than half of the US$34 billion of Chinese exports are produced by foreign companies.

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