By David Hodari
Saudi Arabian Oil Co. on Wednesday cut all of the prices at which it will sell oil to Asia and Europe in June, while slightly raising its prices for the U.S., signaling the struggles some of Europe's and Asia's economies have faced in keeping coronavirus infection rates at bay.
The state-run company, also known as Saudi Aramco, cut all prices for Far East Asia, lowering its Arab light crude oil by 0.10 cents a barrel to a 1.70 cents-a-barrel premium to the Oman/Dubai average.
Meanwhile, Aramco cut its light crude sale price to Northwest Europe by 0.50 cents a barrel, leaving it at a 2.90-cents-a -barrel discount to Brent crude oil traded on the Intercontinental Exchange, while lowering its light crude sale price for the Mediterranean by 0.20 cents a barrel to give it a 2.30-cents-a-barrel discount to ICE Brent.
After lowering most of its U.S. sale prices lower by 0.10 cents a barrel last month, Aramco increased all of its prices by 0.20 cents a barrel for June, giving its light crude price a 1.05 a barrel premium to the Argus Sour Crude Index, or ASCI, which reflect the U.S. Gulf Coast medium-sour crude.
Spiraling coronavirus case figures in India have spooked investors in recent weeks, but analysts said Wednesday that the low likelihood that the country's government will impose lockdowns was providing support to oil demand. Several major European economies have also struggled to keep case numbers down. In contrast, the U.S. and some European economies such as the U.K. continue to open up.
At 1447 GMT, Brent crude oil was up 1.2% at $69.70 a barrel and WTI futures were up 1.7% at $66.47 a barrel after the American Petroleum Institute released bullish inventory numbers late Tuesday.
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(END) Dow Jones Newswires