Oil Set for First Annual Decline Since 2015 After Turbulent Year

Monday, 31 December 2018 19:49 WIB

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Oil headed for its first annual decline since 2015, slumping more than 20 percent in a turbulent year that saw fears of supply scarcity turn to expectations of a surplus.

Crude jumped 2.5 percent in New York on Friday, but prices remain on course for a 37 percent drop this quarter -- the worst in four years. There’s growing concern that a trade dispute between the U.S. and China, along with tighter Federal Reserve monetary policy, will weaken global fuel demand. With American shale output booming, world oil markets could face excess supply next year, even though OPEC and its allies have pledged to rein in production.

West Texas Intermediate for February rose $1.01 to $46.34 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange at 7:33 a.m. local time. Prices are on track for a 23 percent decline this year after climbing about 60 percent in the previous two years. Total volume traded Monday was about 24 percent below the 100-day average.

Brent for March settlement added $1.39 to $54.60 a barrel on the London-based ICE Futures Europe exchange. The February contract expired Friday after closing 4 cents higher at $52.20. The global benchmark crude has lost about 34 percent this quarter, and is headed for a 18 percent annual drop. It’s trading at a premium of $7.97 to March WTI.

Source: Bloomberg




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