Crude Oil Prices Decline Amidst Rising U.S. Inventories

Crude oil prices dropped again on Wednesday after a rebound from the lows touched on Monday amidst data that showed an accumulation of inventories in the U.S.

Data released by the American Petroleum Institute on Tuesday showed an increase of 3.26 million barrels in crude oil stockpile for the week ended March 17, versus expectations of a draw of 1.45 million barrels. The previous week had recorded an accumulation of 1.2 million barrels.

Official data from the Energy Information Administration is due for release on Wednesday. Analysts are expecting a draw of 1.6 million barrels in the week ended March 17 versus the accumulation of 1.6 million barrels in the previous week.

Sentiment for the black fluid has been adversely affected as the recent banking crisis in the U.S. exacerbated worries of a recession that could dent oil demand. All eyes are now on the Fed for its interest rate decision as well as the forward guidance. The potentially challenging tradeoff between financial stability and price stability that the Fed is currently facing has been weighing on investor sentiment over the past few weeks.

Brent Oil Futures for May settlement traded in a band of $75.42 and $72.82. It is currently at $75.00, down 0.42 percent from the previous close. Brent crude price had fallen to as low as $70.12 on Monday.

West Texas Intermediate Crude Oil Futures for May settlement too traded tight, between a high of $69.60 and a low of $68.90. The current price of $69.32 represents a loss of 0.50 percent from Tuesday’s close. WTI crude price had fallen to a low of $64.12 on Monday.

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