Oil prices registered a higher note early Wednesday with a surprise draw in the U.S.' crude oil inventories, although stocks are still abundant with lower demand expectations due to the coronavirus outbreak.
Brent crude was trading at $59.47 per barrel at 0630 GMT on Wednesday for a 0.29% gain after closing Tuesday at $59.30 a barrel. The international benchmark lost 2.26% on Monday due to risks that China's economic growth and global oil demand could be hurt in the first quarter of 2020 due to the outbreak.
American benchmark West Texas Intermediate (WTI) was trading at $54.05 a barrel at 0630 GMT on Wednesday for a 0.52% increase after ending the previous session at $53.77 per barrel.
The U.S.’ crude oil inventories are estimated to decline by 4.27 million barrels for the week ending Jan. 24, according to American Petroleum Institute (API) estimates on Tuesday. The market expectation was an increase of 482,000 barrels in crude inventories.
While the API's estimate of an inventory draw pushed prices higher, they still remain under pressure amid worries over the global spread of the coronavirus that originated in China last week.
The death toll in China from the outbreak has reached 132, and there are currently 5,974 confirmed cases, according to the country's National Health Commission on Wednesday.
The U.S.' Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) issued a travel warning on Tuesday against China, and the U.K. Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab advised its citizens to avoid traveling to the country.
By Ovunc Kutlu