Oil prices rose in Asian trade and were expected to end the week with strong gains on sign demand returning as some governments encourage tough lockdowns of coronaviruses.
The US benchmark West Texas Intermediate has gained 2.25 cents to change hands at $24.08 a barrel, and this week it has raised by about 20 a cent. Brent oil, an international standard, added 1.66 percent to trade at $29.95 a barrel, contributing more than 10 a cent to the market this week.
Oil markets were hammered in April, as demand was strangled by the virus due to company closures and travel restrictions, with US oil dipping for the first time into negative territory. Yet they have begun rallying as policymakers start rolling back restrictions from Asia to Europe as they reach the height of their outbreaks, with new infections and deaths slowing. The rally was helped by an agreement between top producers to cut production by nearly 10 million barrels per day that came into effect on May 1.
Saudi Arabia, further supporting markets, reported that it will increase prices for nearly all grades of oil for June, suggesting that it aims to improve profits rather than gain market share. But analysts cautioned that the recovery will be slow as investors continue to gage how quickly demand will return after a sudden shutdown of global business.
Extracted from City42 News