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EghtesadOnline: Oil prices came off seven-week lows on Monday but remained under pressure after Japan said it was weighing releasing oil reserves and as the Covid-19 situation in Europe worsened, raising concerns about both oversupply and weak demand.

Brent lost 26 cents, or 0.3%, to $78.63 a barrel and US West Texas Intermediate crude futures were down 12 cents, or 0.2%, at $75.82 a barrel, Reuters reported.

The market is in a state of flux as strategic petroleum reserves’ releases are not fully priced in, said an oil trader in Singapore.

WTI and Brent prices hit their lowest since Oct. 1 earlier in the session. They slumped around 3% on Friday, declining for the fourth straight week for the first time since March 2020.

Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida signaled on Saturday he was ready to help combat soaring oil prices following a request from the United States to release oil from its emergency stockpile, in an unprecedented move.

Tokyo is exploring ways to bypass a law that permits the release of oil reserves only in cases of supply shortage or natural disasters. 

The White House on Friday pressed the OPEC producer group again to maintain adequate global supply.

 

Brent WTI