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Oil prices remain stable despite Hurricane Laura accelerates

by Bunkerist
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Oil prices remain stable on Thursday as the hurricane in the Gulf of Mexico affected the US oil industry, forcing oil rigs and refineries to stop production.

Brent crude LCOc1 futures for October, which expire on Friday, rose 13 cents, or, 0.3% to $45.77 a barrel by 0540 GMT, having fallen 22 cents, or 0.5%, on Wednesday. The more active November Brent contract LCOc2 was up 10 cents at $46.26 per barrel.

West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude CLc1 futures inched up 1 cent to $43.40 a barrel.

The threat of Hurricane Laura has pushed the market up this week, but the storm is not expected to affect supply much because oil and product stocks remain high due to the coronavirus outbreak affecting fuel demand.

Global supply volumes suppress the hurricane’s rising effect on the price.

U.S. crude inventories remained at 507.8 million barrels at the weekend of August 21, after a larger-than-expected drop of 4.7 million barrels.

According to expectations, Laura could be the strongest storm to hit the Louisiana beach when she arrived early Thursday. Hurricane has been upgraded to Category 4 and there are concerns about the impact. According to estimates, the oil refining town Port Arthur is also on the way to Laura.

On Tuesday, oil producers evacuated 310 offshore facilities, halting 1.56 million barrels of crude oil per day, or 84% of the Gulf of Mexico production. Nine refineries, processing about 2.9 million barrels of oil or serving about 15% of US capacity, were also closed due to the hurricane.

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