Prices fell this week amid growing concerns that another wave of the coronavirus pandemic will spark tighter lockdowns and further stifle oil demand. New York futures edged lower Friday and fell 2.1 percent on the week closing at $40.25 in New York and $41.92 in London.
Prices climbed $4 a barrel last week, closing at about $43 in London and $41 in New York. They were lifted by hurricane Sally in the Gulf of Mexico, which took more than 500,000 b/d offline and left production 30 percent below normal by week’s end. A second storm is already forming in the western Gulf, which threatens to lower output still further.
Oil: Futures posted their first back-to-back weekly loss since April’s rout with the end of the summer driving season and concern about OPEC’s production compliance weighing on prices. New York futures fell 6.1 percent last week, coinciding with a fall in US equities. The market was under pressure all week, starting with Saudi Arabia’s surprise move to cut prices on oil it supplies to Asia by $1.00. The second wave of selling pressure was fueled by a surprise increase in US crude stockpiles as the pandemic continues to erode demand for fuels. West Texas Intermediate settled at $37.33 a barrel and Brent settled at $39.83 a barrel –down 6.6 percent for the week.
Oil: New York futures settled near two-month lows after gains in the dollar reduced the appeal of commodities priced in US currency and concerns about over-supply mount. Prices were pressured by extended declines in the US equities market and by a report showing US job growth slowed further in August as financial assistance from the government ran out. October futures settled $1.60 lower at $39.77 on Friday, while London’s Brent was down $1.41 to settle at $42.66.