Oil prices fell for a 10th consecutive session on Friday, sinking U.S. crude futures deeper into bear market territory and wiping out the benchmark’s gains for the year.
Crude futures are poised for their fifth straight week of losses as growing output from key producers and a deteriorating outlook for oil demand deepen a sell-off spurred by October’s broader market sell-off.
The drop marks a stunning reversal from last month, when oil prices hit nearly four-year highs as the market braced for potential shortages once U.S. sanctions on Iran, OPEC’s third biggest oil producer, snapped back into place.
“The market’s not tight. I think there are windows where you could perceive it to be tight, and I think the markets got caught into that,” Christyan Malek, head of EMEA oil and gas research at J.P. Morgan told CNBC on Friday. “The reality is that we’re still in a world where we’re overproducing and we’ve got surplus.”
U.S. West Texas Intermediate crude fell 82 cents, or 1.4 percent, to $59.85 by 9:03 a.m. ET (1403 GMT). The contract is now down nearly 1 percent since the start of the year. It fell as low $59.28 on Friday, its weakest level in nearly nine months.