An oil pump jack pumps oil in a field near Calgary, Alberta, Canada July 21, 2014. REUTERS/Todd Korol

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  • Shenzhen in China expands COVID-19 restrictions as cases rise
  • Chinese factory activity in August declines as orders fall
  • U.S. Crude and Gasoline Inventories Fall – EIA
  • OPEC+ sees market tightening in 2022, risks to oil demand growth

TOKYO, Sept 1 (Reuters) – Oil prices fell on Thursday as investors feared aggressive interest rate hikes by global policymakers could slow economies and dent demand for fuel, while new restrictions to curb COVID-19 in China have also added pressure.

Brent crude futures fell 80 cents, or 0.8%, to $94.84 a barrel at 0626 GMT. U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures fell 85 cents, or 1%, to $88.70 a barrel.

“Growing fears about weakening fuel demand due to aggressive rate hikes by US and European central banks have outweighed worries about tight global supply,” said Hiroyuki Kikukawa, chief executive of the research at Nissan Securities.

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Recent signs of weakness in China’s economy and the country’s tighter pandemic restrictions also weighed on sentiment, he added.

“The hard-fought market, reflecting lackluster demand prospects and tight supply estimates, is expected to continue,” Kikukawa said.

Chinese factory activity contracted for the first time in three months in August amid weaker demand, while power shortages and fresh COVID-19 outbreaks disrupted production, according to a private sector survey. Read more

South China’s tech hub Shenzhen has tightened COVID-19 restrictions as cases continue to rise, with large events and indoor entertainment suspended for three days in the city’s most populous district. city, Baoan. Read more

Recent volatility in the oil market followed concerns over insufficient supply in the months after Russia sent military forces to Ukraine and as OPEC scrambles to boost production .

However, output from the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) and the United States hit its highest level since the early days of the coronavirus pandemic.

OPEC production reached 29.6 million barrels per day (bpd) in the most recent month, according to a Reuters survey, while U.S. production hit 11.82 million bpd in June. Both are at their highest levels since April 2020. read more

Yet the oil market will post a slight surplus of just 0.4 million bpd in 2022, far less than previously forecast, according to OPEC and its partners – known as OPEC+ – due to underproduction of oil. its members, OPEC+ sources said. Read more

Meanwhile, U.S. crude inventories fell 3.3 million barrels, the U.S. Energy Information Administration said on Wednesday, while gasoline inventories fell 1.2 million barrels. barrels.

Finance ministers from the Group of Seven wealthy nations club will discuss the U.S. Biden administration’s proposed price cap for Russian oil when they meet on Friday, the White House said. Read more

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Reporting by Yuka Obayashi and Laura Sanicola; Editing by Richard Pullin and Christopher Cushing

Our standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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