Oil steady as investors eye OPEC+ meeting next week
Global economic recession fears continue weighing on prices and heighten worries over weakening demand
Oil prices showed marginal gains on Friday as investors await the OPEC+ meeting next week, when the world’s biggest oil producers will decide their output regime for September.
International benchmark Brent crude was trading at $102.75 per barrel at 09.47 a.m. local time (0647 GMT) for a 0.90% increase after the previous session closed at $101.83 a barrel.
American benchmark West Texas Intermediate (WTI) was at $97.50 per barrel at the same time for a 1.12% gain after the previous session closed at $96.42 a barrel.
Market players are focused on the OPEC+ meeting to weigh oil supply concerns and uncertainties over a global economic recession.
The US Commerce Department data on Thursday showed that the country’s economy shrank between April and June of this year, a sign the US may be teetering on the edge of a recession.
The nation's gross domestic product, a measure of total spending on goods and services across the economy, fell at an annual rate of 0.9%.
This came after the Fed raised its benchmark interest rate by 75 basis points. That was against expectations of a hike of 100 basis points.
However, US Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen said the American economy achieved a historic recovery in the past 18 months and posted the fastest single-year decline in unemployment.
Recession fears also heighten worries of weakening demand.
“High food and energy costs around the world continue to temper consumption. Road fuel sales in the UK are waning again, while gasoline demand remains below its five-year average for this time of the year. Jet fuel demand is also weak, with the number of commercial flights about 14% less than the pre-pandemic levels in 2019,” Australia and New Zealand Banking Group (ANZ) commodity strategist Daniel Hynes said in an e-mail.
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