Oil Prices Slide As Spike in US Coronavirus Cases Casts Gloom Over Fuel Demand Prospects
Oil prices fell on Tuesday amid concerns that a surge in new coronavirus cases, especially in the United States, will hamper any recovery in fuel demand.
U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude CLc1 futures fell 54 cents, or 1.3%, to $40.09 a barrel at 0703 GMT, well off an earlier high of $40.79.
Brent crude LCOc1 futures declined by 56 cents, or 1.3%, to $42.54, after hitting an intraday high of $43.19.
With 16 U.S. states reporting record increases in new COVID-19 case in the first five days of July, according to a Reuters tally, there is mounting concern that public health measures to limit the virus spread will curb fuel demand in the world’s biggest oil consuming country.
“The potential for demand destruction as lockdown re-instatement looks more likely are combining with concerns about OPEC+ discipline to weigh on oil prices,” said CMC Markets’s Chief Market Strategist Michael McCarthy in Sydney in an email.