Oil markets polarized as OPEC brushes off omicron fears


Oil market watchers are torn between dramatically different forecasts for crude prices, even after OPEC’s upbeat forecast for crude demand in 2022.

OPEC’s outlook sees the world consuming 99.13 million barrels per day of crude in the first quarter of 2022, an increase of 1.1 million barrels per day from its last forecast a month ago, showing a more relaxed outlook on Covid-19 risks.

The omicron variant’s impact is projected to be “mild and short-lived,” OPEC’s latest monthly report said, adding that the world is better equipped to manage the pandemic.

While the 13 member group of oil-producing states has not let fears of the omicron variant change its projected timeline for a return to…


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