Oil Prices Fall as Crude Stocks in U.S. Unexpectedly Surge

Oil prices dipped in early trade on Wednesday after industry data indicated a large build in US oil stocks rather than the expected decline, underscoring concerns about waning demand even as supply tightens.

U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures fell 40 cents, or 0.53%, to $74.99 at 09.41 A.M. (Thai time), paring a 3% gain from the previous session.

Brent crude futures dropped 46 cents, or 0.57%, at $80.22 per barrel.

According to market sources citing American Petroleum Institute data, oil stockpiles in the United States increased by around 7.8 million barrels in the week ending December 9, whereas experts polled by Reuters projected a 3.6 million barrel decline in stocks.

Even though the increase in gasoline supplies was less than projected, the increase in distillate stocks—which include heating oil and jet fuel—was greater than anticipated.

Stocks had risen by 3% the previous session on optimism that Chinese demand would increase following the removal of COVID-19 restrictions and on a falling currency as a result of recent data showing a decline in US inflation.