U.S. West Texas Intermediate crude oil futures are putting in a mixed performance on Friday on low post-holiday volume. Earlier in the session, the U.S. futures contract fell more than 1% amid concerns about oversupply and doubts about a vaccine to end the coronavirus pandemic, but at the mid-session, the market is trading higher, putting it on course for a fourth straight week of gains ahead of an OPEC+ meeting early next week.
Vaccine Issues Encouraging Profit-Taking
In a slow news week, traders were once again focusing on a coronavirus vaccine, but this time, they appear to be booking profits after a big price jump as several scientists have sounded doubts over how robust the results of trials from AstraZeneca were.
Earlier in the week, both oil benchmarks jumped about 6% after AstraZeneca announced that its COVID-19 vaccine could be up to 90% effective, adding to successful trial results of Pfizer and Moderna Inc under development in the fight to end the worst pandemic in a century.
However, former pharmaceutical executives in the U.S. raised questions this week over the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine candidate. “We believe that this product will never be licensed in the U.S.,” one group of critical U.S.-based analysts wrote this week.
US Crude Stockpiles Fall Unexpectedly, Gasoline Builds: EIA
U.S. crude oil inventories fell last week, as well as distillate stocks, while gasoline stockpiles rose sharply, the U.S. Energy…