Crude oil rose today after data showed that US inventories fell more than expected, and OPEC raised its forecast for oil demand, but the gains were capped by concerns about the Coronavirus and increased output. Brent crude prices rose to $ 64 a barrel, while US crude reached $ 61 levels again.
Signs of a strong economic recovery in China and the United States reinforced recent price gains but concerns about a worldwide halt in vaccine launches and a high number of Coronavirus infections in India and Brazil slowed price progress.
Also, what helped the price rise is the weakening of the US dollar, as it hit its lowest level in three weeks today, making purchases of crude oil cheaper for countries that use other currencies. On the other hand, the possibility of excluding a return to the nuclear agreement between the United States and Iran and thus not lifting sanctions on Iranian oil has led to support prices.
OPEC revised its forecast yesterday for global oil demand growth this year, and now expects demand to rise by 5.95 million barrels per day in 2021, an increase of 70,000 barrels per day over its forecast last month. Also, American Petroleum Institute data showed a decline in crude inventories by 3.6 million barrels in the week ending April 9, compared to expectations for a decline of 2.9 million barrels. Traders are also looking forward to official inventory data from the Energy Information Administration today.
But there are concerns about increased oil production in the United States and increased supplies from Iran as OPEC and its allies prepare to increase supplies from May.