Oil futures extended losses in Asian hours on Monday as market participants weighed a possible halt on OPEC and non-OPEC output cuts.
Last week, Russia and Saudi Arabia oil ministers said the possibility of reducing production cuts in the near term was still up for discussion.
In the last few days, speculation has been building up about a potential increase of production levels in order to avoid market unbalance.
This idea gained popularity among investors following the recent developments in the Middle East. As the US is preparing a batch of new sanctions against Iran after pulling off from the Nuclear deal, traders believe those measures would push down Iranian oil exports.
On the other hand is Venezuela, which could also be target of US economic sanctions following President Donald Trump’s accusations against newly-elected President Nicolas Maduro about unconstitutional practices.
The US West Texas Intermediate crude contracts dropped 1.93 percent to $66.57 per barrel as of 08:20 GMT. Meanwhile, Brent futures were down 1.70 percent at $75.14 a barrel.
On Friday, Baker Hughes oil rig count showed an increase of 15 units, bringing the total count to 859 rigs, the highest level since March 2015.