Combined oil, balancing stimulus optimism with mounting issues about gasoline demand

© Reuters.

From Gina Lee – Oil was mixed in Asia Tuesday morning, and investors were optimistic that further stimulus measures will boost economic growth against mounting fears over fuel demand as lockdowns caused by COVID-19 persist worldwide.

rose 0.40% to $ 54.95 by 9:47 p.m. ET (2:47 a.m. GMT) while falling 0.23% to $ 52.30. Both Brent and WTI futures stayed above the $ 50 mark.

Due to bank holidays in the US, there was no agreement on Monday, and the WTI futures for the first month of February expire on Wednesday.

Positive economic data from China, the world’s leading crude oil importer, helped lift sentiment, showing that refinery production rose 3% to a new record in 2020. Data released Monday by the National Bureau of Statistics also showed year-over-year growth of 7.3% – a year in December. GDP rose 6.5% in the fourth quarter but rose 2.6%.

It also revealed that China was also the only major economy that prevented a contraction in 2020 as many nations still struggled to contain COVID-19 outbreaks. The ever-growing number of COVID-19 cases worldwide and the resulting restrictive measures, including lockdowns, are dampening fuel demand and limiting the prices of the black liquid.

ANZ analysts voiced concerns about fuel sales in India, the world’s third largest crude oil importer in 2020, which fell in January from December, as well as a rising number of COVID-19 cases in China and Japan that could dampen fuel demand.

“In Europe and the US, the slow adoption of vaccines also raises concerns that a recovery in demand will remain elusive,” the analysts told Reuters.

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