With the semi-annual Vienna meeting rapidly approaching, OPEC is expected to make a decision on extending its output cut deal on May 25th. However, analysts are becoming increasingly sceptical that any extension of the OPEC deal at current levels may not be enough to shift global inventories to more normalized levels.
Data released Friday by US oil services giant Baker Hughes showed a rise in active oil rigs for a 15th consecutive week, adding to concerns that domestic production will gradually follow the operational rig count higher.
Also weighing on investor sentiment is the ongoing recovery in Libyan oil production, with the National Oil Company reporting that production has risen to its highest level since December 2014.
Brent July futures were last seen around $51.37 a barrel as the immediate trend remains bearish, with a dip below the $50-mark looking increasingly likely.