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NEW YORK:

Oil prices rose about 2% in volatile trade on Friday but were still heading for a weekly decline as investors worried about a potential recession-driven demand downturn even though global fuel supplies remained tight.

Central banks around the world are raising interest rates to tame inflation, spurring fears that rising borrowing costs could stifle growth, while mass Covid-19 testing in Shanghai this week caused worries about potential lockdowns that could also hit oil demand.

Brent crude futures rose $2.46, or 2.4%, to $107.11 a barrel by 1713 GMT. US West Texas Intermediate crude rose $2.10, or 2%, to $104.83 a barrel.

Both benchmarks traded in negative territory and then rebounded from session lows.

Brent remained on track for a weekly decline of about 4.1% and WTI for a loss of 3.4%, following on from the first monthly decline since November.

Prices tumbled on Tuesday, when Brent’s $10.73 drop was the contract’s third-biggest daily fall since it started trading in 1988.

US non-farm jobs data showed job growth increased more than expected in June, a sign of persistent labour market strength.

 

Published in The Express Tribune, July 9th, 2022.

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