Oil fell to the lowest since mid-2009 amid growing supply from Russia and Iraq and signs of manufacturing weakness in Europe and China.
Futures headed for a sixth weekly loss in New York and London. Oil supplies in Iraq and Russia surged to the highest level in decades in December, according to data from both countries’ governments. Euro-area factory output expanded less than initially estimated in December. A manufacturing gauge in China, the world’s second-largest oil consumer, fell to the weakest level in 18 months, government data showed yesterday.
Oil slumped 46 percent in New York in 2014, the steepest drop in six years and second-worst since trading began in 1983, as U.S. producers and the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries ceded no ground in their battle for market share. OPEC pumped above its quota for a seventh month in December even as U.S. output expanded to the highest in more than three decades, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.
West Texas Intermediate for February delivery traded 95 cents, or 1.8 percent, lower at $52.32 a barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange as of 12:46 p.m. London time. That’s the lowest since May 2009. Prices are down 4.4 percent this week.