Oil prices rebounded during trading today, Thursday, with US crude trading above $73, with the follow-up to the developments of the Omicron pivot.
Crude prices had turned lower earlier in the session, with fears of more travel restrictions due to the rapid spread of the Omicron mutant, after China imposed new travel restrictions, and Australia re-imposed restrictions to cope with the increasing cases of infection.
Oil Prices Today
The price of West Texas Intermediate crude futures – February delivery – increased by 0.4%, recording 73.04 dollars per barrel.
The prices of Brent crude futures – for February 2022 delivery – also rose by 0.4%, recording $75.62 a barrel.
Oil prices rose more than 2% at the end of trading on Wednesday, with a larger-than-expected drop in US oil inventories.
“Oil’s direction is entirely dependent on developments in the Omicron mutator, and as long as it remains more contagious but less virulent, Oil is likely to continue its rally, with today’s ranges exacerbated by poor liquidity,” said Jeffrey Haley, senior analyst .
The performance of oil prices comes as some governments have re-imposed a set of restrictions to slow the spread of the omicron mutant; The Chinese city of Xi’an ordered its 13 million residents to stay at home, while Scotland imposed restrictions on gathering from December 26 for up to 3 weeks, and two Australian states reimposed the mask as cases increased.
Oil markets are gripped by a state of fear, despite positive news about the introduction of the first oral treatment for Corona, after the United States allowed the use of the Covid-19 antiviral drug from Pfizer for people aged 12 years or older, which is the first oral treatment. And at home, what experts describe as an effective drug against the rapidly spreading Omicron mutant.
Meanwhile, a study from South Africa indicated that those with Omicron were less likely to be hospitalized than those with a Delta strain, Reuters reported.
The Dollar And OPEC
This comes in conjunction with the weakness of the US dollar, which supports the oil markets; Because it makes goods cheaper for those who own other currencies.
The dollar fell near a one-week low after data on Wednesday showed US consumer confidence improved more than expected in December.
The market followed any moves by the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) and its allies from abroad, led by Russia, in the “OPEC +” alliance, which announced that they are in continuous meeting to review their plan to add 400,000 barrels per day of supply in January.