Oil prices fell on Wednesday, staying close to their near three-month lows reached earlier this week, as plentiful supplies and slowing economic growth weighed on markets.
However, analysts said the current downtrend would be modest and that they saw a recovery later this year.
Brent crude oil futures <LCOc1> were trading at $44.67 at 0656 GMT, down 20 cents from their previous close.
U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude <CLc1> was trading down 23 cents from the previous session, at $42.69.
Brent hit $44.14 the previous day, the lowest since May, and the contract has shed over 15 percent in value since peaking in June as a refined product glut as well as slowing economic growth dent the demand outlook for crude oil.
Analysts said they expected more price declines in the short-term as oversupply continued while demand growth stutters.
“My view is that oil prices will find a low between $39 and $42 per barrel over the coming weeks due to headwinds,” said Ric Spooner, chief market analyst at CMC Markets in Sydney, Australia.
“After that, however, we are coming closer to seeing a balanced market again,” he added, saying that $50-60 per barrel would represent such a supply and demand balance.
Oil markets have been dogged by oversupply in the last two years, which pulled down prices by as much as 70 percent between 2014 and early 2016, when Brent hit a more than a decade low of around $27 per barrel.
Source: Reuters (Reporting by Henning Gloystein; Editing by Ed Davies adn Subhranshu Sahu)