translated from Spanish: U.S. crude oil price falls nearly 20%, below $15 a barrel

The United States.-U.S. crude fell on Monday by nearly 20%, below $15 a barrel in Asia, a new low in more than two decades, due to the collapse in global demand caused by the coronavirus pandemic. The US West Texas Intermediate (WTI) barrel lost more than 18.7% and stood at $14.84 in the first Asian operations, while the North Sea Brent fell 1.5% to $27.64 a barrel.

An oil well in Cotulla, Texas, on March 12, 2019/AFP

Oil markets have plummeted in recent weeks to their lowest level in nearly 20 years, because blockades and travel restrictions around the world have a strong impact on demand. The crisis escalated after OPEC member Saudi Arabia launched a price war with Russia, which is not a member of the OPEC organization. The two countries ended the dispute earlier this month by accepting, along with other states, reducing production by nearly 10 million barrels per day to boost markets affected by the virus. But prices continued to fall. Analysts believe that cuts are not enough to offset the massive drop in demand.
«Crude oil prices remained under pressure,» an ANZ bank notes in a note.» Although OPEC has accepted an unprecedented reduction in production, the market is flooded with oil,» it added, referring to the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries and non-OPEC members.» It is still feared that storage facilities in the United States are running out of capacity,» the bank says. The U.S. Energy Information Administration reported that oil inventories rose 19.25 million barrels last week.

Original source in Spanish

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