Oil rebounded from 2022 lows on Thursday, as China began implementing a more relaxed version of its strict “zero COVID” policy and reports emerged that some tankers carrying Russian oil are facing delays in crossing to the Mediterranean from Russia’s Black Sea ports after a G7 price cap came into effect.
Benchmark Brent crude futures rose 0.7 percent to $77.71 a barrel, while WTI crude futures were up 1.1 percent at $72.81.
Both contracts hit 2022 lows on Wednesday, giving up all of the gains since Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, after data from Energy Information Administration (EIA) showed a sharp increase in gasoline inventories in the week ended December 2nd.
Recession worries also hurt markets after top U.S. banks warned of a recession in 2023 and China reported weak trade balance figures for November.
Three years into the pandemic and following widespread protests last month, many Chinese embraced newfound freedoms today after the country dropped key parts of its tough zero-COVID regime.