Brent crude oil futures plunged 5 cents, or 0.1%, to $ 56.01 a barrel at 0124 GMT, while the U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) fell 1 cent to $ 52.90 per barrel.
“The scorching rally in the oil market has likely come to a halt as the stronger dollar and the overhang of the ubiquitous gasoline supply offset the evaporation of US crude inventories,” said Stephen Innes, chief market strategist. worldwide at Axi.
Last week, U.S. crude oil inventories fell more than expected, while gasoline and distillate inventories rose as refiners increased production to their highest level since August, Energy said on Wednesday. Information Administration.
China, the world’s second-largest oil consumer, reported its largest daily increase in new COVID-19 cases in more than 10 months, with infections in northeastern Heilongjiang province nearly tripling, highlighting the growing threat as a major national holiday approaches.
Governments across Europe on Wednesday announced tighter and longer lockdowns against coronaviruses due to a rapidly spreading variant of COVID first detected in Britain and vaccinations are unlikely to help much before two to three months.
Oil producers face an unprecedented challenge of balancing supply and demand, as factors such as the pace and response to COVID-19 vaccines cloud the outlook, an official from the International Agency for Human Rights has said. energy (AIE).
Nonetheless, a major COVID-19 relief package, which US President-elect Joe Biden is due to unveil on Thursday, has helped control the losses.
Saudi Arabia, the top oil exporter, cut supplies of crude cargo by up to a quarter in February for some Asian buyers, sources told Reuters, who supported prices.