NEW YORK — Oil prices jumped in early trading Monday because of the weekend agreement by the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries to reduce production later in the year, but they soon fell victim to profit taking and closed only slightly above Friday's levels.
The August contract on the New York Mercantile Exchange ended the day 11 cents higher at $20.35 a barrel, after trading as high as $20.70 early in the session.
Part of the easing was also attributed to the buying of crude oil contracts for the winter period while selling current contracts.
OPEC ministers meeting in Vienna decided to reduce their planned production in the fourth quarter to 16.6 million barrels a day, the same as the third quarter, from the originally planned 18.3 million barrels. Oil demand usually rises in the winter. The cartel also agreed to keep a target price of $18 a barrel.