Oil prices were down Wednesday on concerns that rising commodity prices would spur global inflation and a potential fall in oil demand.
International benchmark Brent traded at $83.31 a barrel at 1028 GMT for a 0.13% loss after ending the previous session ended at $83.42 a barrel.
American benchmark West Texas Intermediate (WTI) traded at $80.50 per barrel at the same time for a 0.17% decrease after ending the previous session at $80.64 a barrel.
Price slumps followed the release of data from China’s General Administration Customs showing the country’s crude oil imports plummeted 15.3% in September year-over-year. The world's largest crude oil consumer decided to sell oil from its strategic reserves last month, adding a domestic oil supply of about 9.99 million barrels per day (bpd), compared to 11.8 million bpd in September last year.
China also announced on Tuesday that it would enable its coal-fired power plants to charge some consumers market-driven electricity prices in response to power shortages from record-high coal prices.
In its World Economic Outlook published on Tuesday, the International Money Fund (IMF) said price pressures caused by supply-demand mismatches and higher commodity prices are expected to subside next year.
The IMF also trimmed its 2021 global growth forecast to 5.9% from the 6.0% forecast it made in July, leaving the 2022 global growth forecast unchanged at 4.9%.
The increasing US dollar index also exerted pressure on oil prices, discouraging investors to purchase dollar-indexed crude oil.
The US dollar index, which measures the value of the American dollar against a basket of currencies including the Japanese yen, British pound, Canadian dollar, Swedish krona and Swiss franc, reached 94.41.
By Sibel Morrow