Oil prices fell on Wednesday with a surprising increase in crude oil stocks in the US, and investors continue to worry that tighter lockdowns in Europe against the coronavirus pandemic would dampen demand.
Brent crude futures fell 11 cents, or 0.2% at 0421 GMT, to $ 50.65 per barrel, while U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude oil futures fell 9 cents, or 0.2%, to $ 47.53 per barrel.
According to the data, US crude oil stocks increased by 2 million barrels in the week of December 11, increased by approximately 495 million barrels.
According to surveys, analysts expected a draw of 1.9 million barrels from the market. Official data will be released later Wednesday.
The launch of vaccines this month to combat the coronavirus pandemic seems unlikely to quickly reverse the devastation in global oil demand.
The IEA lowered its oil demand forecast by 50,000 barrels a day this year and 170,000 barrels for next year, as fewer people travel by air and use less jet fuel.
The U.S. began distributing its approved COVID-19 vaccine on Tuesday to hundreds of additional centers for public and massive vaccination in the coming months and vaccinated thousands of healthcare professionals.
US congressional leaders also made significant progress Tuesday after two meetings to end a months-long stand on coronavirus aid and finalize the funding bill.