On Wednesday, November 18, oil futures rose 0.9 percent to $41.82 per barrel backed by reports from Pfizer Inc (PFE) and BionTech SE (BNTX) that their coronavirus vaccine is 95 percent successful rather than the 90 percent previously announced.
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However the excitement associated with the potential rapid introduction of the vaccine to the mass market is steadily easing, while news is emerging about the rising number of cases worldwide and the strengthening of the quarantine steps. The United States, in particular, declared yesterday the closing of schools in New York and limits on restaurants and gyms in Minnesota. In the United States, the death toll has now been reaching 250,000 since start of the pandemic. Against this context, there is rising concern in commodity markets that in the short and medium term, global energy demand will remain under pressure until the vaccine is widely available.
With regard to oil market figures, the EIA Agency provided data on crude oil stocks in the United States yesterday. The indicator increased by 0.768 million barrels for the week ended November 13, after an increase of 4.278 million barrels a week earlier, while analysts had expected an increase of 1.65 million barrels. At the same time, stocks of gasoline rose by 2.611 million barrels compared to the previous week’s decrease of 2.309 million barrels, which was higher than the consensus estimate of +0.087 million barrels. At the same time, for the ninth week in a row, distillate stocks continued to decline: the indicator decreased by 5.217 million barrels compared to a reduction of 5.354 million barrels a week earlier and the estimate by analysts of -1.457 million barrels.
The price of Brent crude oil remained up 1.40 percent to $44.34 mark, which is a signal for the upward trend to begin. Gold prices are down 0.62 percent and are at $1873.90 per troy ounce.