WTI Crude Oil Slips Lower as Markets Worry About Rise in Coronavirus Cases
Arslan Butt • 1 min read
WTI crude oil prices have weakened for the first time this week early on Wednesday as traders focus on the rise in the number of coronavirus infections in the US and the rest of the world, and how this would impact oil demand in the near future. At the time of writing, WTI crude oil is trading at around $41.57 per barrel.
A continued increase in the number of cases and death toll have prompted several states in the US to call off or restrain their plans to reopen their economies after the lockdowns. With lockdowns set to continue in some parts if the country and other parts of the world, it is unlikely that oil demand could recover anytime soon, which is driving prices lower.
WTI crude oil prices failed to show much reaction to an unexpected decline in US crude inventories over the previous week. According to the API report which released during the previous session, crude stockpiles fell by 8.6 million barrels to 520 million barrels. Analysts had forecast a decline by 3 million barrels instead.
Other encouraging news like better than expected factory activity data from the US and other parts of the world also failed to support crude oil prices. While growth in manufacturing activity could spur oil demand, markets focus on worries of resurgence in cases which could drive countries to reimpose lockdown measures, denting oil demand all over again.