Oil fell as a weakening outlook for the global economy and rising crude stockpiles in the U.S. signaled that markets will remain comfortably supplied.
Futures in New York retreated 1.7 percent. They have this week held in the narrowest range since December 2017 as traders balance concerns over fuel demand and economic growth with OPEC’s aggressive supply cuts. U.S. crude inventories surged far more than expected last week, according to government data.
Crude prices this year climbed more than 25 percent through mid-February as the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries and its partners curbed output, and American sanctions on Iran and Venezuela also tightened supplies. But the rally’s stalled since then. The European Central Bank cut economic forecasts, China reduced its goal for expansion and the OECD lowered its global projections. The U.S.-China trade spat is adding to the uncertainty.
West Texas Intermediate for April delivery declined as much as $1 to $55.66 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange and was at $55.70 at 10:33 a.m. in London. Prices are down 0.2 percent this week.
Brent for May settlement fell $1.21, or 1.8 percent, to $65.09 a barrel on the London-based ICE Futures Europe exchange. The global benchmark crude’s premium over WTI for the same month narrowed to $9.04 a barrel.
Source : Bloomberg