Brent crude futures continued to decline for the third consecutive session, falling $1.69, or 2.1%, to settle at $80.53 a barrel by 0327 GMT.
The price of US West Texas Intermediate crude decreased by $2.04, or 2.6 percent, to reach $76.35 a barrel. A settlement price for US crude was not determined on Thursday due to the Thanksgiving holiday.
CMC Markets analyst Calvin Wong said that oil prices were likely to decline in conjunction with the broader financial markets due to fears that the new Corona strain would damage demand by limiting movements again, while market participation fell due to holidays in the United States. .
Last Tuesday, the administration of US President Joe Biden announced plans to withdraw millions of barrels of oil from strategic reserves, in coordination with other major consumer countries such as China, India and Japan, in an attempt to calm prices.
A source in the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries “OPEC” said that such a withdrawal will likely lead to an increase in supplies in the coming months, according to the findings of a panel of experts advising ministers of OPEC countries.
The source said that the Council of the OPEC Economic Committee expects a surplus of 400,000 barrels per day in December, increasing to 2.3 million barrels per day in January and 3.7 million in February if consuming countries go ahead with withdrawals.
Expectations of an increase in oil supply dominate the prospects of a meeting of “OPEC +”, the group that includes OPEC and its allies, on December 2, to decide on immediate production.
The group will decide whether to continue to increase production by 400,000 barrels per day in January.
However, benchmark crude contracts are heading towards recording the first weekly increase in about a month, as the total amount of withdrawals from the reserves is estimated between 70 and 80 million barrels, which is less than what market participants had expected.
“Because the amount is small, I think the goal is to ease supply tightness, not to have a big impact on oil markets,” Japan Petroleum Industry Association chief Tsutomu Sugimori told reporters on Thursday evening, according to Reuters.