Oil prices climbed on Thursday, bolstered by production outages in the Gulf of Mexico and potential of higher supply losses in Norway and by optimism regarding a U.S. COVID-19 stimulus package.
Brent crude futures advanced by 69 cents or 1.64%, to $42.68 a barrel by 10:13 West Africa Time (WAT), after losing 1.6% on Wednesday.
U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures added 53 cents, or 1.33%, to $40.48 by 11:12 WAT, having contracted by 1.8% on Wednesday.
Bonny Light, Nigeria’s banner crude grade, slimmed down by $1.14 or 2.75% to $40.24 on Wednesday. Qua Iboe, another major oil grade, dipped by 4 cents or 0.10% to $40.90 per barrel by 06:38 WAT on Thursday.
“If Delta stays weak, the oil rally could quickly run out of steam,” Jeffrey Halley, analyst at brokerage OANDA said of the hurricane sweeping through the Gulf of Mexico.
Also helping oil was the possibility of more output shutdowns in the North Sea by reason of an industrial action. Its biggest oilfield, the Johan Sverdrup field, is bound to halt operations except the strike is terminated not later than 14th October.
The reduction in output dispels worries concerning low demand, uptick in coronavirus cases as well as an upscale in United States oil stockpiles, according to the Energy Information Administration.
Fresh hopes of some U.S. coronavirus relief package also lifted the market.
President Trump tweeted that Congress should pass money for small businesses, airlines and stimulus cheques for individuals after cancelling negotiations over a bigger stimulus deal.
Oil plumbed new lows in April on account of the coronavirus crisis, with benchmark Brent crumbling to its weakest level in 21 years below $16. An output reduction spearheaded by the Organisation of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) stimulated prices.
The cartel is now confronted with a fresh difficulty posed by increasing output from Libya, a member of OPEC excused from cutting production.
Join the conversation
INVESTIGATION… Ten years after, communities count losses as AfDB, Cross River govt abandon road project
Ten years after the Cross River State government and African Development Bank (AFDB) jointly awarded the Yahe-Wanokom-Wanikade-Benue border road for...
INVESTIGATION….N.3bn down the drain: Why water projects for Enugu communities don’t work
In this concluding part, ARINZE CHIJIOKE talks about some of the projects that are serving the people and how various WASH programmes have failed to tackle...
INVESTIGATION…PARKVIEW ESTATE: Exclusive images of how billionaire property developer incurred Lagos govt‘s anger
Many have seen the demolished building, but not many know the circumstances that led to the teardown of the about...
INVESTIGATION… N.3bn down the drain, as Enugu communities suffer from dry taps
In November 2020, three organizations and the Enugu State government celebrated the completion of N300 million worth of projects that were expected...
INVESTIGATION… How herdsmen crisis compounds woes of already deprived Ogun communities
Earlier in January, the Nigerian media space was awash with reports of violence between herders and farmers across the country....