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Oil continues rise on hopes of production freeze
[NEW YORK] Oil prices continued to rise on world markets on Monday, lifted by remarks from a Russian official who hinted at a possible production freeze in cooperation with Opec.
In New York, a barrel of West Texas Intermediate for September delivery rose US$1.25 to close at US$45.74.
North Sea Brent for October delivery was up US$1.38 at US$48.35 per barrel on the Intercontinental Exchange in London.
In an interview with the Saudi newspaper Asharq al-Awsat, Russian Energy Minister Alexander Novak was quoted as saying that his country was working with Saudi Arabia to achieve oil market stability.
The remarks followed statements last week from Saudi Arabia's oil minister, who said a meeting of oil producers next month could yield an agreement on stabilising prices.
The Organisation of the Petroleum Exporting Countries is due to convene an informal meeting in Algeria toward the end of September.
Russia, one of the world's top producers of oil, is not an Opec member but has been open about consultations with the group on dealing with weak crude prices.
"Over the week-end we continue to hear constructive comments about some type of production freeze," said Matt Smith of ClipperData.
"Even though it seems unlikely... the market is still pricing it in and we see prices moving slightly higher."