The global benchmark Brent crude contracts ended the trading session as low as 1.48 dollars, or 1.8%, to record at the settlement of 81.08 dollars a barrel, after it jumped earlier in the session to 83.47 dollars, its highest level since October 2018. While the US benchmark West Texas crude contracts closed The median was down $1.50, or 1.9%, at $77.43 a barrel, after it had jumped to $79.78, its highest level since November 2014.
This came against the backdrop of the Financial Times that the United States is raising the possibility of releasing emergency oil reserves.
US crude closed at its highest level since 2014 on Tuesday, as higher natural gas prices increased demand for crude and oil products ahead of winter, while OPEC+ continues to gradually add supplies to the market.
And in the days leading up to Monday’s group meeting, the Biden administration pushed producers to increase crude production amid growing concerns about shrinking global energy supplies.
US Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm raised the prospect of crude oil being freed from the Strategic Petroleum Reserve, saying “all tools are on the table,” the Financial Times reported, citing comments made at Wednesday’s energy summit.
The newspaper said Granholm did not rule out a ban on the export of crude oil.
Exports from Russia’s Gazprom to Europe in the first nine months of the year were close to an all-time high, according to the company. Putin said at an energy meeting yesterday that if this pace continues for the rest of the year, it will be a “record year”.
“Less than expected” supplies from Russia, the region’s largest supplier, were a major cause of the crisis, according to some European officials.
However, the Russian president blamed the shift to green energy and low investment in extractive industries, for what he described as “hysteria and some confusion” in European markets where energy prices are rising.
On the other hand, yesterday’s Energy Information Administration data showed that crude oil inventories increased by 2.35 million barrels last week, more than the supply gain announced by the sector-funded American Petroleum Institute.
The data also showed that US crude exports fell for the first time in a month, while total net oil imports rose to their highest levels since August 2019.