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Oct 15, 2021
7:19PM

Crude oil prices climb on strong demand, weak supply

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Global crude oil prices climbed, heading for gains of more than 3 per cent for the week, on increasing signs of robust demand and tighter supplies over the next few months as rocketing gas and coal prices stoke a switch to oil products.

Brent crude oil futures touched their highest since October 2018, rising 92 cents, to 84.92 dollars a barrel. Front-month prices are set to climb for the sixth straight week, up 3 per cent this week. US crude futures rose 75 cents to 82.06 dollars a barrel, adding to an 87 cent jump on Thursday. The contract is heading for a 3.4 per cent gain on the week, up for the eighth consecutive week.

Prices could rise sharply as OECD oil stockpiles are likely to drop to their lowest level since 2015. Demand has picked up with the recovery from the COVID pandemic, with a further boost coming from industry turning away from expensive gas and coal to fuel oil and diesel for power.

The International Energy Agency said the energy crunch is expected to boost oil demand by 500,000 barrels per day. That would result in a supply gap of around 700,000 barrels per day through the end of this year, until the Organization of the Petroleum Countries and allies, together called OPEC PLUS, add more supply, as planned in January.

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