2021.02.1909:04:00UTC+00Oil Extends Slide On Demand Concerns

Oil prices fell sharply on Friday to extend losses from the previous session as the deep freeze in Texas shut down refineries, denting the demand of crude over the coming weeks.

Refinery outages and the possibility of oil refiners making repairs before reviving operations stoked concerns about demand.

Investors were also concerned about a looming increase in crude oil supplies from the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries and its allies (OPEC+).

Benchmark Brent crude fell 1.1 percent to $63.24 a barrel, while West Texas Intermediate crude futures were down as much as 1.5 percent at $59.59.

Media reports suggest that Saudi Arabia plans to increase its oil output in the coming months amid recovery in prices.

The world's largest oil exporter surprised oil markets last month when it said it would unilaterally slash 1 million barrels a day of crude production in February.

Goldman Sachs said in a note that it sees minimal oil price impact from the big freeze in the U.S. South.

"While the gross impacts on supply and demand are large, they are mostly offsetting, and even more importantly, transitory, resulting in minimal implications for global oil prices, leaving risks to a further reversal of this week's rally," it said.

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