31 December 2015, Abuja – Crude oil futures fell around half a dollar yesterday as the market remained under pressure from slowing demand and high supplies, while forecasts that a cold snap in Europe and the United States would be short-lived also hurt prices.
Crude prices have plunged by two-thirds since mid-2014 as soaring output from the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries, Russia and the United States led to a global surplus of between half a million and 2 million barrels per day.
More recently, a slowing demand outlook, especially in Asia but also Europe, has started dragging on prices.
Front-month U.S. West Texas Intermediate crude futures were trading at $37.18 per barrel at 0140 GMT, down 69 cents or 1.82 percent from their last settlement. Brent futures were down 47 cents, or 1.24 percent, to $37.32 a barrel.
“The 2016 outlook is for lower prices, especially early next year. Many are closing their last long positions for the year today as nobody wants to come back in January and be surprised badly. Better start with a clean sheet,” a trader said.
- The Guardian