Oil fell on Monday on fears that surging COVID-19 cases in India will dent fuel demand in the world’s third-biggest oil importer, while the end of a force majeure on exports from a Libyan terminal and an expected supply increase from OPEC+ added to pressure.
Brent crude dropped $1.02, or 1.5%, to $65.09 a barrel by 1109 GMT. U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude was down 90 cents, or 1.5%, at $61.24 a barrel.
Both benchmarks fell about 1% last week.
“The market is tending to focus more on the bad news from India and Japan at present, where the number of new coronavirus cases has risen sharply, prompting increased mobility restrictions to be imposed,” said Commerzbank analyst Eugen Weinberg.
Japan is the world’s fourth biggest crude oil importers.
India’s new coronavirus infections hit a record peak for a fifth day on Monday as countries including Britain, Germany and the United States pledged to send urgent medical aid to help battle the crisis overwhelming Indian hospitals. read more
Consultancy FGE expects gasoline demand in India to drop by 100,000 barrels per day (bpd) in April and by more than 170,000 bpd in May. India’s total gasoline sales came to nearly 747,000 bpd in March.