WTI crude prices raced lower, toward $80. That is down from above $108 just four months ago. China’s manufacturing data and an admission by the Federal Reserve of an economic slowdown in the United States, combined with the expanding recession in Europe, contributed to the belief that demand for crude is faltering. New data on the size of stockpiles also hurt oil prices. MarketWatch reports:
A report from the Energy Information Administration showed crude supplies rose by 2.9 million barrels in the week ended June 15. That contrasted with expectations of a decline of 600,000 barrels for the week, according to analysts polled by Platts.
Economists continue to debate whether the sharp drop in energy prices will cushion the effects of a recession.
Douglas A. McIntyre