A report published by the US Energy Information Administration (EIA) last week showed that the country's oil production averaged a record 11.9 million barrels a day in November, up 345,000 from October and up almost 1.8 million compared with November 2017's average figures.
Still, some analysts were relieved that U.S. crude oil inventories only rose by 1.3 million barrels in the week to February 1, according to the EIA, compared with expectations for an increase of 2.2 million barrels.
"We expect the oil price to rise in the first-half of 2019 on tightening supply conditions and decline in the second-half on weakening economic activity and an increase in USA crude exports to worldwide markets", said French bank BNP Paribas.
Oil companies still scrambling to find alternative supplies of heavy crude - and raising the specter of production cuts - have privately argued the administration has not found the right balance nor approved options that would help relieve pressure on refineries.
International Brent crude oil futures on Monday were down 20 cents, or 0.32 percent at 0339 GMT to $62.54 a barrel, after closing up 3.14 percent in the previous session to their highest close since November 21.
In gasoline, the authority reported a build of 500,000 barrels, with daily production at a little less than 9.9 million barrels.
Oil fell on Thursday after data showing a rise in US inventories weighed on sentiment already rattled by the global economy, though prices were buoyed by the prospect that supply could fall short of global demand.
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"The collapse in oil prices late past year has resulted in more cautious spending by U.S. oil explorers", said Dhar.
Short-term, the market is getting a boost from USA sanctions on Venezuelan oil exports.
The sanctions will sharply limit oil transactions between Venezuela and other countries and are similar to those imposed on Iran past year, experts said after examining details posted by the Treasury Department.
Venezuela, like fellow OPEC members Iran and Libya, was exempt from production curbs under the OPEC+ deal on expectations that its output faced involuntary downward pressure in 2019. "That said, if the other OPEC countries fail to offset this outage, the oil market could quickly become undersupplied, driving the price up".
About a dozen tankers carrying over 7 million barrels of Venezuelan crude and products were anchored this week at the U.S Gulf Coast waiting for directions on how to pay for the cargoes following the sanctions, according to Refinitiv Eikon data.
Also dampening market sentiment still were worries about weaker global economic growth and the US-China trade dispute. "China trade talks", said Gene McGillian, director of market research at Tradition Energy in Stamford, Connecticut.
"Anything out of the State of the Union that hints at the U.S".