Oil falls on second wave outbreak fears, rise in U.S. inventories

Oil prices fell on Wednesday on worries about a possible second wave of coronavirus cases in countries starting to ease lockdowns, while industry data showed a rise in U.S. crude inventories.

The concerns overshadowed a further call by Saudi Arabia for larger production cuts to balance the market following a virus-induced demand slump after OPEC’s biggest producer said earlier this week it planned to add to cut output again.

Brent crude was down 58 cents, or 1.9%, at $29.40 by 0221 GMT, having risen 1.2% on Tuesday. U.S. crude was down 39 cents, or 1.5%, at $25.39 a barrel, after jumping nearly 7% in the previous session.

“While the market feels more comfortable on the supply side of the equation, on the demand side, the focus will continue to revolve around the risks of easing lockdowns,” said Stephen Innes, chief markets strategist at AxiCorp.

U.S. infectious disease expert Anthony Fauci on Tuesday told Congress that easing coronavirus lockdowns may set off new outbreaks of the illness, which has killed 80,000 Americans and badly damaged the world’s biggest economy.

 

Last updated on Tue., May 13, 2020.

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