Coup in Gabon slightly increases oil prices

The military coup in Gabon, a member of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC), on Wednesday pushed oil prices slightly upwards while creating supply risks. 

The international benchmark Brent crude was up more than 0.3% at around $85.80 per barrel at 1150 GMT, while the American benchmark West Texas Intermediate (WTI) was traded at around $81.5, rising 0.4%.

A group of senior Gabonese army officers appeared on national television early Wednesday and announced that they had seized power.

The move came shortly after the Gabonese Election Center confirmed that incumbent President Ali Bongo officially won a third term with 64.27% of the votes.

The Central African country produces 190,000 barrels of oil a day, and no coup-related disruption reported yet to Gabon’s oil output.

Oil prices have been rising for the fifth consecutive session as US crude inventories fell by 11.5 million barrels last week.

Late Tuesday, the American Petroleum Institute (API) announced that it estimated US crude oil inventories to fall by 11.5 million barrels, compared to the market’s expectation of a 2.9 million-barrel drop.

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