TOKYO (Reuters) – Global crude oil prices fell further on Wednesday in the wake of the largest quarterly and monthly losses ever for crude, as supply glut fears were exacerbated by a rise in expectations that exceeded US stocks and widening the rift within OPEC.
And oil prices near their lowest levels since 2002 amid the global crisis of the Corona virus, which led to a global economic slowdown and reduced demand for crude. And futures trading on crude ended the first quarter, down about 70 percent after record losses in March.
By 0643 GMT, Brent crude, the global benchmark, fell $ 1.02, equivalent to 3.9 percent, to $ 25.33 a barrel. WTI lost 35 cents, or 1.7 percent to $ 20.13 a barrel, after giving up earlier gains, which analysts said was caused by forming positions at the start of the new quarter.
Data showed the American Petroleum Institute that US crude stocks increased 10.5 million barrels last week, far exceeding expectations for a rise of four million barrels.
Around 800,000 people have been infected with the virus worldwide, and more than 38,800 people have died, according to a Reuters count.
Pessimistic sentiment in the market has fueled the row within the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) after Saudi Arabia and the rest of the group’s member states failed on Tuesday to agree to a meeting in April to discuss falling prices.
Prepared by Hala Kandil for the Arabic Bulletin – Edited by Moataz Mohamed