Oil prices rose slightly on Thursday (9/11), with worries about demand and the removal of the risk of a general war having sent the “black gold” into losses last week.
The rise comes after both U.S. crude and Brent fell to their lowest level since mid-July on Wednesday, as concern over possible supply disruptions in the Middle East eased and concern over U.S. and Chinese demand intensified. Brent is trading nearly $20 a barrel below its September high.
Thursday’s data from China suggested that fighting deflation amid weak demand remains a challenge for the country’s policymakers.
Chinese consumer prices edged lower in October as key gauges of domestic demand showed weakness not seen since the pandemic, while deepening factory deflation cast doubt on the prospects for a broad-based economic recovery.
Earlier in the week, customs data showed China’s total exports of goods and services shrank faster than expected.
Demand indicators don’t look rosy in the United States either. U.S. crude oil inventories rose by 11.9 million barrels in the week to Nov. 3, sources said, citing data from the American Petroleum Institute.
If confirmed, this would represent the biggest weekly gain since February. The US Energy Information Administration (EIA), however, has delayed the release of weekly oil inventory data until November 15 to upgrade the system.
Both OPEC and the International Energy Agency (IEA) are due to present their views on the state of supply-demand fundamentals next week.
From last month’s reports, higher output is expected to emerge from Venezuela following the easing of US sanctions, Investec’s head of commodities Calum Macpherson said, also highlighting a worsening demand outlook.
“There is a risk that the market will be in surplus next year, even if the Saudis extend their cuts beyond the end of December,” he said.
OPEC is due to meet at the end of the month to discuss production policy for 2024.
By midday Thursday, US crude was up 0.44% at $75.66 a barrel, while Brent was up 0.50% at $79.94 a barrel.
Natural gas is being boosted
Dutch natural gas futures, a benchmark for Europe, are also on the rise, rising 2.672% to 47 euros per megawatt hour.
Gold fell 0.27% to $1,952.45 an ounce, while silver fell 0.51% to $22.613 an ounce and copper lost 0.17% to $3.6312 a pound.
In currencies, the US dollar was down 0.17% against the euro at $1.0688 per euro.
Against the British pound, the US currency fell 0.18% to $1.226 per pound, which gained 0.01% against the euro at 0.8719 British pounds per euro.
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