Oil price reverse to $70 amid COVID concerns

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Oil prices fell on Thursday wiping out early gains as more countries imposed movement restrictions amid a surge in coronavirus cases

Although the U.S. dollar was strengthened, tension in the Middle East kept prices from falling further.

Brent crude oil futures dropped by 39 cents to $69.99 a barrel after earlier climbing to a session high of $70.72.

U.S crude futures fell 31 cents, to $67.84 a barrel.

However, both benchmarks fell by more than $2 a barrel on Wednesday.

In the United States, the world’s biggest oil consumer, COVID-19 cases hit a six-month high with more than 100,000 infections reported on Wednesday, according to a Reuters tally.

Also weighing on prices was a surprise 3.6 million barrel build in U.S. crude stockpiles last week in data from the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA).

Tensions in the Middle East kept price declines in check, however.

Israeli aircraft struck what the country’s military said were rocket launch sites in south Lebanon early on Thursday in response to earlier projectile fire towards Israel.




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