Crude oil prices were down on Friday following the EU’s restrictive measures against the novel coronavirus, which intensified demand fall worries.
International benchmark Brent crude was trading at $40.02 per barrel at 0641 GMT for a 2.22% decrease after closing Wednesday at $40.93 a barrel.
American benchmark West Texas Intermediate was at $37.86 per barrel at the same time for a 2.39% decrease after it ended the previous session at $38.79 a barrel.
Oil prices showed a downward trend on Friday as European states introduced strict lockdown measures to control the second wave of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19).
Several European countries including Italy, France, Greece and Spain have seen infections soaring to record highs in daily new coronavirus cases over the past two days.
France and the UK announced nationwide lockdowns and other European countries, including Austria, Germany, Italy and Spain brought further strict restrictions to curtail the spread of the outbreak.
Uncertainty around the results of the US presidential election is continuing to negatively affect oil prices, as no winner has yet been determined although Democratic nominee Joe Biden maintains a sizable lead over incumbent Donald Trump two days after the US Election Day.
To support prices, global oil markets are expecting an extension of the OPEC+ oil production cut agreement at their next meeting between Nov. 30 and Dec. 1 when they are set to agree on a policy for 2021 onwards.
The OPEC+ group, which is currently reducing production by 7.7 million barrels per day, is projected to keep the current output production cuts level next year.
By Ebru Sengul Cevrioglu