A Wall Street dropped for a third consecutive session, oil prices have fallen to US$74.5 on the Nymex, and to US$72.83 on the ICE Futures exchange in London. Oil prices are weakening amid ongoing concerns about weak energy demand and a third day of selloff in US stock markets.
Thursday’s report by the Energy Information Administration (EIA) showed gasoline supply rising by 3.9 mln barrels last week as demand fell for the fourth straight week. US refineries, which have struggled to pass the higher crude costs to motorists, have cut refining rates to the lowest levels on record (excluding periods when hurricanes forced refineries to shut down in the Gulf of Mexico). The dollar has once again slipped against the euro and the Japanese yen. Also, fundamentally, demand has been weak throughout the year, except from China. Chinese demand is expected to slow down as the country is starting to slow down its overheated economy.