Crude oil prices drifted lower on Friday as surge in coronavirus cases and tighter restrictions on businesses in several places across the world raised concerns about outlook for energy demand.
Oil was hurt also due to uncertainty about a U.S. fiscal stimulus anytime soon, and possibility of a no-deal Brexit.
British Prime Minister Boris Johnson said there was “a strong possibility” Britain and the EU would fail to strike a new deal.
The rollout of coronavirus vaccines in the UK, and the nod for Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine from the U.S. drug regulators helped limit oil’s decline.
West Texas Intermediate Crude oil futures for January ended down $0.21 or about 0.5% at $46.57 a barrel.
However, WTI futures gained about 0.7% in the week.
Brent crude futures were down $0.28 or 0.56% at $49.97 a barrel a little while ago.
In the U.S., New York governor Andrew Cuomo ordered New York City restaurants to suspend indoor dining effective Monday, following a surge in new coronavirus cases in the city.
Recent data showing a surge in crude inventories in the U.S., and increased output from Libya also weighed on oil prices.
A report from Baker Hughes said the number of active U.S. rigs drilling for oil rose by 12 to 258 this week. The total active U.S. rig count, which includes those drilling for natural gas, was also up by 15 to 338, according to the report from Baker Hughes.
The material has been provided by InstaForex Company – www.instaforex.com