Oil prices fell to the lowest in more than 17 years as demand plunged as a result of the pandemic and an unrelenting price war between Saudi Arabia and Russia showed no signs of easing, CNBC reports.
Brent crude prices hit $23.03 a barrel on Monday, March 30 morning during Asia hours – the lowest level since November 15, 2002. It has since clawed back some losses following that record decline, but was last still 5.86% lower at $23.47 a barrel.
U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures briefly dipped below $20 per barrel to $19.90 – their lowest level since March 20, when they fell as low as $19.50. WTI was last 4.51% lower at $20.54 per barrel.
Those declines come as Saudi Arabia signaled no breakthrough in the oil price war with Russia. On Friday, the two countries were still at a stalemate, with Saudi Arabia saying it was not in talks with Russia to stabilize oil markets despite Washington stepping in to pressure both sides to end the price war.
In early March, OPEC and non-OPEC allies, sometimes referred to as OPEC+, failed to agree on the terms of deeper supply cuts.
The fallout between OPEC kingpin Saudi Arabia and non-OPEC leader Russia has kickstarted an oil price war. OPEC recommended additional production cuts of 1.5 million bpd starting in April and extending until the end of the year, but OPEC-ally Russia rejected the additional cuts.