Oil Prices Slip On Surprise Inventory Build

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Oil prices were flat to slightly lower on Wednesday as investors reacted to downbeat inventory data and tensions between OPEC members over how much to pump next year.

Investors also fear that positive vaccine developments are unlikely to significantly change the demand outlook in the next couple of months.

Benchmark Brent crude was marginally lower at $47.40 a barrel, while West Texas Intermediate crude futures were down 0.2 percent at $44.48.

The American Petroleum Institute’s weekly report showed that U.S. crude inventories rose by 4.1 million barrels last week, compared with analysts’ expectations for a 2.4-million barrel draw. There was a 3.8-million-barrel build in the previous week.

The numbers came as the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC), Russia and other allies, a group known as OPEC+, delayed any decision over plans on output cuts for 2021.

OPEC+ postponed a decision on its next steps until Thursday after the three most influential members reportedly failed to agree on how best to proceed with production in 2021.

It was said that the UAE is uncomfortable with low compliance levels of other members.

On the vaccine front, French Prime Minister Jean Castex told BFM TV that European regulators should soon approve a Covid-19 vaccine for the European Union, and that the approval could be obtained later this month.

The Pfizer-BioNTech Covid-19 vaccine will be available in Britain from next week.

The material has been provided by InstaForex Company – www.instaforex.com

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