Oil falls as coronavirus worries offset gasoline recovery
Oil prices fell on Thursday as worries about reinstated lockdowns in the United States dwarfed signs of a recovery in gasoline demand.
Brent crude futures slid 0.2%, or 7 cents, at e$43.22 per barrel. U.S. West Texas Intermediate crude futures dropped 0.3%, or 14 cents, at $40.76 per barrel.
Oil prices rose on Wednesday after U.S. gasoline inventories fell by 4.8 million barrels last week, while demand rose to 8.8 million bpd.
However, a surge in new coronavirus cases in many U.S. states worried investors about the sustainability of fuel demand. That has kept both Brent and WTI in narrow ranges this week.
The United States reported over 58,000 new coronavirus cases on Wednesday, with cases surging in 42 out of 50 states.
Meanwhile, investors await OPEC’s July 15 meeting where its market monitoring panel will decide whether to halt or extend its record 9.7 million bpd output cut.