Oil prices up for 4th week

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    Net decrease. Adjustments to date totalled to a drop of P3.47 per liter for gasoline, P7.76 per liter for diesel and P11.19 per liter for kerosene.

    Local oil players raised prices for the fourth consecutive week as global crude firmed on hopes of a US economic stimulus package as well as of vaccines against the new coronavirus disease 2019.

    According to the Department of Energy, the latest average Manila price per liter of gasoline (RON95) is at P45.80, diesel at P35.15 and kerosene at P37.91.

    Shell and Seaoil adjusted per liter prices upward by P0.25 of gasoline, P0.40 of diesel and P0.60 of kerosene.

    As of December 1, year-to-date adjustments on fuel prices summed up to a net decrease of P3.47 per liter for gasoline, P7.76 per liter for diesel and P11.19 per liter for kerosene.

    Reuters reported that as of Friday last week, Brent went up 1.11 percent higher and settled at $49.25 a barrel while West Texas Intermediate increased 62 cents to end at $46.26 a barrel.

    The report cited major factors in the upward trend: the $908-billion coronavirus aid plan gaining momentum in US Congress and; the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries and its allies’ compromise to increase output slightly from January while continuing bulk of existing supply curbs to cope with coronavirus-hit demand.

    The increase means the group will reduce production by 7.2 million barrels per day (bpd) or 7 percent of global demand from January compared with current cuts of 7.7 million bpd.

    However, analysts warn of an undersupplied oil market even under the new higher supply quotas while others claim the additional production can already tip the market into oversupply. -J. Macapagal