Oil slides after OPEC fails to do more; sterling drops on polls

Women stand in the rain in front of an electronic stock board showing Japan’s Nikkei 225 index at a securities firm in Tokyo Thursday

Oil extended falls on Friday after tumbling in the previous session when the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) and allied producers extended output cuts but disappointed investors betting on longer or larger supply curbs.

Even as the OPEC and non-OPEC producers agreed to extend until March 2018 their ongoing oil output cuts, India has reached an understanding with the global oil cartel to establish a joint working group to serve as a forum for "producer-consumer dialogue" to address mutual concerns.

In the currency market, sterling fell 0.5 per cent to $1.288, its biggest one-day slide in over three weeks, after a YouGov poll showed Britain's opposition Labour Party had reduced the lead of Prime Minister May's Conservatives to five points, less than a fortnight before a national election.

"The violence in Marawi has to be stopped and if martial law is the way to go about it. that is what the market is looking at", Philstocks Financial analyst Jun Calaycay told ANC's Market Edge with Cathy Yang.

"Coming on the back of losses yesterday, it's turning into a rotten end to the week for the pound".

Earlier, MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan, which closed at a two-year high on Thursday, fell 0.2 percent, shrinking its weekly gain to 1.45 percent.

Tokyo's Nikkei ended 0.6 percent down, while Hong Kong slipped 0.1 percent in the afternoon and Sydney finished 0.7 percent off. Singapore eased 0.2 percent while Taipei was also lower.

Asian stocks, which are measured by MSCI.MIAPJ0000PUS raised nearly 1% on Wednesday, after the U.S. S&P 500 index .SPX dropped a closing record.

Ann-Louise Hittle, vice president at energy consultancy Wood Mackenzie said the decision in Vienna sent a signal of continued support for oil prices from Opec which helped United States onshore drillers make plans to further raise their production. BNN's Jameson Berkow has more.

OPEC and non-members led by Russian Federation on Thursday chose to extend cuts in oil output by nine months to March 2018 as they battle a global glut of crude after seeing prices halve and revenues drop sharply in the past three years.

At 8:14am BST, Brent was broadly flat at $51.49 per barrel up 0.1% or 3 cents, while the WTI was down 0.1% or 6 cents to $48.84 per barrel.

US crude prices were flat at $48.88 early on Friday, after losing 4.8 percent overnight, set to end the week 2.8 percent lower.

The dollar index, which measures the greenback against a basket of six major rivals, was steady and last traded at 97.297.

Spot gold was up 0.1% at $1,257.01/oz by 4.11am GMT.

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