Oil locked near US$40 on cloudy demand outlook

  • Energy
  • Saturday, 17 Oct 2020

OIL is set for a modest weekly gain on the back of tightening US supplies, while a gloomy demand outlook continues to impede gains above US$40 a barrel.

US crude futures eased 0.3% in Asia, paring their weekly advance to 0.5%. The market ended little changed on Thursday, reversing an earlier decline of as much as 4.4%.

The Energy Information Administration reported a 3.8 million barrel decline in US crude inventories – the biggest weekly drop in four weeks – while distillate supplies fell by the most since 2003, providing optimism around a tightening supply picture.

Still, a return to normal demand levels may be far off. In the US, applications for state unemployment benefits unexpectedly jumped last week to the highest since August and coronavirus cases are continuing to rise around the world, leading to tighter restrictions in European cities including Paris and London. — Bloomberg
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