• $61 a barrel predicted for third quarter
  • Traders eye Iran talks for potential flood of exports

Crude prices face downward pressure for the remainder of the year on robust crude supplies as stocks continue to build, according to analysts at London-based bank Barclays.

The Brent crude price is predicted to average $61 a barrel in the third quarter, compared with $64 a barrel over the past three months, continuing to put pressure on major oil-exporting countries in the Middle East.

“A possible misalignment of Iran’s return, shale’s decline, Chinese stock-building, the end of the driving season, and refining turnarounds might lead to downward price pressure,” says Barclays in its latest forecast.

“Prices face downward pressure for the remainder of the year on resilient oil supplies. Stocks should continue to build through year-end, and we continue to expect Brent to average $61 in the third quarter,” the bank adds.

Barclays forecasts the Brent price to increase to $66 a barrel in the fourth quarter of the year and average $68 a barrel over 2016.

Oil traders are awaiting the outcome of the Iran nuclear talks in Vienna, which could lift sanctions against Iranian oil exports, potentially flooding the market with crude stocks built up in Iran.

Earlier this month, the US Energy Information Administration (EIA) lowered its estimated average price for Brent to $61 a barrel for 2015 and $67 for 2016.

The Brent price closed at $62.38 a barrel on 26 June.

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