NEW YORK: Oil prices were lower on Thursday and markets were relatively quiet as investors showed caution due to persistent global oversupply.
West Texas Intermediate benchmark crude for September delivery dropped a dollar to US$44.75 on the New York Mercantile Exchange.
In London, North Sea Brent, also for September, was down 97 cents at US$46.20 on the Intercontinental Exchange.
Andy Lipow of Lipow Oil Associates said the market remained under pressure. “Yesterday we saw in the EIA stats a build in gasoline inventories and nearly unchanged in distillates,” he said, referring to the weekly stockpiles report of the US Energy Information Administration.
“The feeling is refiners margins are coming under such pressure that we re now starting to hear about refineries run cuts, which would reduce the demand for crude oil, further pressuring the market,” he added. “That s really what s going on, there s no other news out there.”
Crude prices have fluctuated between US$44 and US$52 per barrel in the past month, after falling below US$30 in February on the back of the world supply glut and weak demand.