Oil futures sank to their lowest levels in a week on Wednesday as investors continued to focus on unfavorable inventory and production data, according to Bloomberg MarketWatch.
On the New York Mercantile Exchange, September West Texas Intermediate crude plunged $1.06, or 2.5%, to settle at $41.71 a barrel.
On London’s ICE Futures Exchange, October Brent crude, the global benchmark, slid 93 cents, or 2.1%, to end trading at $44.05 a barrel.
During a volatile trading day, investors were concerned with U.S. government reports reflecting a rise in crude inventories as well as a report from OPEC detailing Saudi Arabia’s record production in July.
Earlier in the day, the U.S. Energy Information Administration reported that domestic crude supplies increased while gasoline and heating oil inventories decreased during the week ending August 5. The EIA report also showed that total U.S. crude production fell by 15,000 barrels a day.
“In recent weeks, it seems the market has been reacting closer to the weekly product data from the EIA,” said John Macaluso, an analyst at Tyche Capital Advisors. “Despite a build in crude oil inventories and a build [at the crude storage hub] in Cushing, Oklahoma, some [temporary] strength was shown in the market, likely from the draws seen in gasoline and distillates.”