Oil prices slump amid coronavirus fears, rising U.S. inventories

NEW YORK, Oct. 28 (Xinhua) -- Oil prices sank on Wednesday as soaring COVID-19 infections and increasing U.S. crude stockpiles weighed on market.

The West Texas Intermediate for December delivery shed 2.18 U.S. dollars to settle at 37.39 dollars a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange, while Brent crude for December delivery decreased 2.08 dollars to close at 39.12 dollars a barrel on the London ICE Futures Exchange.

Market participants worried that surging coronavirus infections in the United States and Europe would lead to renewed lockdowns, slowing down economic recovery, experts noted.

Prices were also under pressure after data showed U.S. crude stockpiles increased considerably last week.

U.S. crude oil inventories rose by 4.3 million barrels in the week ending Oct. 23, the U.S. Energy Information Administration said in a report on Wednesday.

At 492.4 million barrels, U.S. crude oil inventories were about 9 percent above the five-year average for this time of year.

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