Oil prices at lowest level this year
Oil prices have dropped to the lowest level since the beginning of this year.
For a barrel of Brent crude oil, the price this Friday morning was $61.52, a drop of 30 percent from the peak of $86.74 in October.
Since December 2017, the price of Brent oil has not been that low. For a barrel of American WTI oil the price this Friday was $52.84, the lowest level in more than a year.
The significant declines were not what traders expected to see. Due to American sanctions, Iranian oil exports came under pressure this year, although China and India are still allowed to buy Iranian oil.
Under pressure of US President Donald Trump, Saudi Arabia the third largest oil producer, increased their production. The United States itself, now the largest oil producer in the world, has also increased production to record quantities.
Last Wednesday Trump thanked in a remarkable tweet Saudi Arabia for the lower oil prices. Although many countries have imposed sanctions on the Saudi Arabians for the murder of the Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi, Trump has rejected this.