Oil Prices Edging Down

Prices for Brent and WTI have edged down in recent weeks as more downbeat sentiment surrounding the Chinese economy is weighing on prices. The Brent spot rate inched up to US$47.46 on November 9 while WTI reached US$44.52 on the back of Chinese crude imports rising by 9.4% (y-o-y) in October.  The Chinese data reflect crude inventory buildup and domestic refineries taking advantage of low prices (although m-o-m crude imports fell by 5.7%, and overall imports saw a sharper-than-expected y-o-y drop). Oil prices are also supported by the ongoing decline in operating oil rigs in the US as the shale industry reduces production. Despite the slowdown in US output, oversupply continues to haunt the global crude markets.

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