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Title: Oil steadies after sharp fall; focus on China growth


Apr 26, 2022 03:25AM ET


By: AnalysisWatch


Oil prices recovered Tuesday, stabilizing after a sharp 4% drop in the previous session, as concerns over fuel demand in China were eased by the central bank's pledge to support the economy hit by renewed COVID-19 curbs.


Brent crude futures gained 59 cents, or 0.58%, to $102.91 per barrel after previously rising to $103.93.


In the United States, West Texas Intermediate contracts in the United States were up 34 cents, or 0.35%, at $98.88 a barrel by 02:58 AM ET, after reaching $99.82 a barrel in early trading.


Both contracts had settled about 4% lower on Monday, with Brent down as much as $7 a barrel and WTI down about $6 during the session.


The People's Bank of China will maintain adequate liquidity in financial markets, it said in a statement Tuesday, a day after the central bank announced a cut in banks' foreign exchange reserve ratio to support the economy.


Beijing's municipal government expanded its COVID-19 mass testing this week from one district to most of the city of nearly 22 million people, as the population prepares for an upcoming lockdown similar to the tight restrictions in Shanghai.


On the supply side, analysts said the phasing out of Russian oil production would further support prices.

Separately, five analysts polled by Reuters estimated that U.S. crude inventories increased by an average of 2.2 million barrels in the week to April 22, a negative signal for oil markets.


Gasoline inventories rose by about 500,000 barrels last week, and distillate inventories, which include diesel and heating oil, are estimated to have fallen by 600,000 barrels.


The survey was conducted ahead of the release of the American Petroleum Institute's inventory report at 4:30 PM ET Tuesday. Official government data from the Energy Information Administration will be released Wednesday.

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