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Oil prices edge higher as U.S. inventory drop counters demand concerns tied to COVID-19

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Oil prices climbed on Wednesday following a surprise drop in Oughout.S. crude inventories was initially enough to offset concerns about U.S. gasoline demand amid record raises in COVID-19 infections in certain states.

Brent crude coins were up by 18 cents, or 0.4%, at $43.40 the barrel by 0644 GREENWICH MEAN TIME (GMT). U.S. West The state of texas Intermediate crude futures gathered 12 cents, or zero.3%, to $41.16 a barrel.

Inventories involving crude oil in the United States dropped simply by 6.8 mil barrels last week to 531 million barrels, data from field group the American Oil Institute showed on Thursday.

Analysts’ expectations were with an increase of 357,000 barrels. U.S. govt data is due Wednesday.

But, the raging COVID-19 outbreak is keeping alive concerns about falling fuel demand causing an oversupplied market as record numbers of coronavirus infections are reported throughout the world, including in the U.Ersus., the world’s biggest buyer of oil.

“It has become more apparent that the demand recovery many were anticipating in oil over the next half of the year was simply too optimistic,” ‘S Research said.

“A growing in COVID-19 cases, together with continued travel restrictions means that this demand recovery possesses stalled, or at least slowed,” ING said.

Four Oughout.S. states reported one-day records for coronavirus dying, death on Tuesday and situations in Texas passed typically the 400,000 mark.

Attempts to provide relief amongst the outbreak were around disarray as Republicans inside the U.S. disagreed around their own plan for providing $1 trillion in new coronavirus aid on Tuesday.

Analysts are concerned about the risks to just about any U.S. recovery, even though a new Federal Reserve insurance plan statement due to end up being released later on Wednesday day will show how seriously core bankers assess them.

In Hong Kong, the government on Sunday warned the city is around the edge of a large-scale coronavirus outbreak and urged folks to stay indoors as much as possible.

(Reporting by Aaron Sheldrick; Croping and editing by Christian Schmollinger together with Kenneth Maxwell)

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