Oil prices stabilized near the level of $ 67 a barrel today, Friday, and is on a weekly profit path with improved prospects for demand and indications of a strong economic recovery in China and the United States, which dispelled the impact of concerns about the increase in Covid-19 infections in some major economies.
Official data showed today that China’s gross domestic product jumped 18.3 percent in the first quarter year on year. On Thursday, figures showed an increase in US retail sales and a decline in new jobless claims.
By 1340 GMT, Brent crude futures were down 8 cents, equivalent to 0.1%, to $ 66.86 a barrel, on the way to a weekly gain of 6.2% after increasing in the last four sessions.
US West Texas Intermediate crude fell a dime-dozen, or 0.2%, to $ 63.36 a barrel.
Prices have also received support from new sanctions imposed by the United States on Russia, one of the world’s largest oil producers, over allegations of election interference and electronic piracy.
Contributing to the increase this week, both the International Energy Agency and the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) revised raising the oil demand growth forecasts in 2021.
Also, according to figures published on Wednesday, crude inventories in the United States decreased by 5.9 million barrels.