Oil prices fell sharply on Friday as hurricane Dorian strengthened and is expected to reach the coast of the state of Florida early next week, posing a threat to oil demand.
Brent North Sea crude oil for October delivery, which is the last day of use as a benchmark contract, stood at $ 60.43 in London, down 1.06% (or 65 cents) compared to Thursday's closing.
In New York, the US barrel of WTI for the same maturity ended at $ 55.10, down 2.8% (or $ 1.61) from the previous day.
"At the beginning of the day, one of the weather models predicted the hurricane was heading for the Gulf of Mexico, which would have affected the supply," said John Kilduff of Again Capital. Many oil refineries are located in the states near the Gulf of Mexico.
"But according to current models, it is especially the demand that should suffer. Florida could be devastated, which would include a sharp drop in the demand for gasoline, "continued the expert.
Dorian has become a "major" category 3 hurricane on the Saffir-Simpson five, with winds reaching nearly 185 km / h, said the US National Hurricane Center (NHC).
Black gold prices, however, ended the week higher, registering a sharp rise on Wednesday in the wake of a report from the US Agency for Energy Information (EIA) reporting a tumble stocks crude oil, gasoline and distilled products in the United States.
Over the week, a barrel of Brent rose 1.8% or $ 1.09. The barrel of WTI appreciated by 1.7% or 93 cents.
Oil markets will be closed until next Tuesday, Monday September 2nd being a holiday in the United States due to Labor Day.