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By Gina Lee
Investing.com – Oil was up Monday morning in Asia, in a reversal of the previous week’s seven-day losing streak. Investors were busy hunting bargains, but questions remain on how the ever-surging number of COVID-19 cases globally will impact fuel demand.
Brent oil futures jumped 1.30% to $65.59 by 10:58 PM ET (2:58 AM GMT), after hitting their lowest level since May 21 earlier in the session. Brent futures also rolled over to the Nov 21 contract on Aug. 22.
WTI futures rose 0.95% to $62.73, also hitting their lowest level since May 21 earlier in the session.
"Oil prices took a breather on Monday after their steep drops during the previous week. We expect to see more adjustments this week, but the market sentiment will likely remain bearish with growing concerns over slower fuel demand worldwide,” Fujitomi Securities Co Ltd chief analyst Kazuhiko Saito told Reuters.
The spread of COVID-19's Delta variant continues, with South Korea and Vietnam among the nations tightening restrictive measures. Japan tripled COVID-19 tests, changing its strategy after daily new infections reached record levels on Friday.
Meanwhile, there were no new locally transmitted daily COVID-19 infections in China, the world’s top oil importer. However, the country’s 'zero tolerance' COVID-19 policy, meaning tight restrictive measures to curb the country’s latest outbreak, meant disruptions in shipping and global supply chains as ports were ordered closed.
Investors are now looking to the U.S. Federal Reserve’s Jackson Hole symposium for further clues on when asset tapering and interest rate hikes will begin. The symposium will take place online from Aug. 26 to Aug. 28.