Flames emerge from a pipeline at the oil fields in Basra, southeast of Baghdad, Iraq October 14, 2016. REUTERS/Essam Al-Sudani
Reuters: Oil prices drop as Iraq says doesn't want to join OPEC cut
Oil prices fell early on Monday as Iraq said it wanted to be exempt from any deal by producer cartel OPEC to cut production to prop up the market, and as U.S. drillers stepped up work.
Brent crude futures LCOc1 were trading at $51.59 per barrel at 0133 GMT, down 19 cents, or 0.4 percent, from their last close.
U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude was down 22 cents, or 0.4 percent, at $50.63 a barrel.
Traders said the price falls followed comments from Iraq, which said it wanted to be exempt from a production cut by the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) that the group plans to decide at its Nov. 30 meeting.
OPEC plans to reduce production to a range of 32.50 million to 33.0 million barrels per day (bpd), down from 33.39 million bpd in September.
That would be harder to achieve if Iraq, which is OPEC's second-biggest producer after Saudi Arabia, didn't participate.
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