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Omicron concerns force oil prices further down

Increasing headwinds in the commodities market up to the holiday period as smaller trading volumes might worsen price fluctuations.

Photo: Jacob Ehrbahn

Oil prices fall Monday morning resulting from the rapid spread of Omicron infection as the Covid-19 variant stokes concerns about forward-looking demand, reports Bloomberg News.

A barrel of European reference oil Brent trades Monday morning for USD 71.08 against USD 73.75 Friday afternoon. US counterpart West Texas Intermediate sells concurrently for USD 68.18 against USD 71.01.

Covid-19 infection numbers are surging around the whole world as authorities struggle to keep the virus contained.

This has resulted in some nations restricting air traffic, raising concerns about further limitations that could curb mobility and hence reduce demand for crude oil and refined fuels.

Headwinds are also picking up force in the commodities market up to the holiday period as smaller trading volumes could compound price instability.

Furthermore, Asian demand is declining at the same time as central banks adopt tighter monetary policies in efforts to halt galloping inflation.

“We can look forward to a week of a lot of volatility,” said Jeffrey Halley, senior market analyst at Oanda Asia Pacific Pte, tells the media:

“But it’s dangerous to assume that oil will plunge further from here because OPEC+ is sitting there watching, and they have left themselves the room to react very quickly if they need to.”

English Edit: Daniel Frank Christensen

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