Oil falls on China's COVID-19 cases, high crude build

By Laura Sanicola NEW YORK (Reuters) - Oil prices fell on Friday, weighed down by a build in U.S. crude inventories and worries that new pandemic restrictions in China will curb fuel demand in the world's biggest oil importer

Reuters January 23, 2021 00:07:05 IST
Oil falls on China's COVID-19 cases, high crude build

COVID-19 cases, high crude build" src="https://images.firstpost.com/wp-content/uploads/reuters/01-2021/23/2021-01-22T020929Z_1_LYNXMPEH0L04J_RTROPTP_2_GLOBAL-OIL.jpg" alt="Oil falls on Chinas COVID19 cases high crude build" width="300" height="225" />

By Laura Sanicola

NEW YORK (Reuters) - Oil prices fell on Friday, weighed down by a build in U.S. crude inventories and worries that new pandemic restrictions in China will curb fuel demand in the world's biggest oil importer.

Brent crude futures declined 60 cents, or 1.1%, to $55.50 a barrel by 11:58 EDT (1658 GMT).

U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures fell 68 cents, or 1.3%, to $52.45.

Overall U.S. crude inventories surprisingly rose by 4.4 million barrels in the most recent week, versus expectations for a draw of 1.2 million barrels.

Recovering fuel demand in China underpinned market gains late last year while the United States and Europe lagged, but that source of support is fading as a fresh wave of COVID-19 cases has sparked new restrictions.

Travel on U.S. roads fell 11% in November, a steeper decline over October road use as coronavirus cases increased, the U.S. Transportation Department said Friday.

"The pandemic seems to continue to expand into a second wave in China, with infections rising by the day and reaching again different regions such as Shanghai," said Rystad Energy oil markets analyst Louise Dickson.

U.S. crude inventory data showed signs of strength in domestic product demand.

While U.S. crude oil stockpiles rose unexpectedly last week, refineries hiked output to their highest capacity usage since March and demand for gasoline and diesel increased week on week.

"Crude oil exports did fall quite dramatically, which is the main reason for a decent build overall in crude stocks,” said Tony Headrick, energy market analyst at CHS Hedging.

(Additional reporting by Noah Browning in London, Sonali Paul in Melbourne and Koustav Samanta in Singapore; Editing by Louise Heavens and Mark Heinrich)

This story has not been edited by Firstpost staff and is generated by auto-feed.

Updated Date:

TAGS:

Subscribe to Moneycontrol Pro at ₹499 for the first year. Use code PRO499. Limited period offer. *T&C apply

also read

Thyssenkrupp ends talks with UK's Liberty on steel unit sale
Business

Thyssenkrupp ends talks with UK's Liberty on steel unit sale

By Christoph Steitz, Tom Käckenhoff and Arno Schuetze FRANKFURT (Reuters) - German conglomerate Thyssenkrupp ended talks to sell its steel division to Britain's Liberty Steel due to differences over value, the latest setback in efforts to consolidate the European sector. Liberty Steel, led by commodities tycoon Sanjeev Gupta, last month submitted a firmed-up non-binding bid for Thyssenkrupp's steel unit, Europe's second biggest in terms of sales, which sources said included commitments to protect jobs and sites.

Factbox: Stonks in Washington: Deciphering Reddit's WallStreetBets lingo
Business

Factbox: Stonks in Washington: Deciphering Reddit's WallStreetBets lingo

(Reuters) - Reddit trading lingo may filter in to Washington on Thursday when top hedge fund managers, the head of Robinhood and Roaring Kitty himself are set to give testimony before U.S. House of Representatives lawmakers.

Brent gives up gains after rising above $65 on Texas freeze
Business

Brent gives up gains after rising above $65 on Texas freeze

By Stephanie Kelly NEW YORK (Reuters) - Oil prices steadied on Thursday, with Brent edging back from a 13-month high, after a sharp drop in U.S. crude inventories supported prices, while buying spurred by a cold snap in the largest U.S. energy-producing state petered out.