Oil prices fell on Friday, on the back of weaker global demand expectations and the resumption of some Libyan crude production.
West Texas Intermediate crude fell for a third straight week after falling in the past two sessions, while Brent crude rose 2% on the week.
On Friday, Brent crude futures were down 0.64% at $103.20 a barrel, while West Texas Intermediate futures were down 1.71% at $94.70.
Friday’s data showed that the global economy is headed for a deep recession, even as central banks radically reverse the ultra-loose monetary policy adopted during the pandemic to support growth.
Signs of weak US demand weighed on oil prices and pushed oil futures down around 3% in the previous session, as limited global supplies continued the market’s recovery.
Supply concerns eased somewhat after Libya restarted production at several oil fields earlier this week.
An executive at Iraq’s Basra Oil Company said the country is capable of increasing its oil production if it requests a 200,000 barrel per day increase this year.
WTI took a hit over the past two sessions, with U.S. gasoline demand falling nearly 8% from a year ago in the middle of the summer driving season, weighed down by record prices at the pump.
On the other hand, signs of stronger demand in Asia lifted the Brent index, leading to its first weekly gain in six weeks.
RBC analysts said India’s demand for gasoline and distillate fuel rose to a record high in June, despite higher prices, as total consumption of refined products was 18% higher than last year and Indian refineries ran at record highs.
Russian Central Bank Governor Elvira Nabiullina said on Friday that Russia would return its crude and oil supplies to countries willing to “cooperate” with Moscow, adding that capping Russian crude prices would also affect global oil prices.
West Texas Intermediate crude was on track for a third straight week of declines after falling in the past two sessions, showing that demand for gasoline in the U.S. is down nearly eight percent from a year earlier. The height of the summer travel season, during which petrol consumption increases, has also been affected, with prices at registration stations being higher.
On the other hand, signs of stronger demand in Asia lifted Brent crude, which led to its first weekly gain in six weeks.
Friday’s data revealed the global economy is heading for an increasingly dangerous recession, with central banks raising interest rates at higher rates compared to more loose monetary policy during the pandemic to support growth.
Signs of weak U.S. demand weighed on oil prices, pushing the benchmark contracts down about 3 percent in the previous session.
But supply worries eased somewhat after Libya restarted production at several oil fields this week.
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