Oil prices lost further ground on Thursday after U.S. crude inventories reached a fresh record high last week, with data showing a buildup of 2.3 million barrels, adding to the previous week's big 9.4M addition, which reflects weak demand in the world's biggest crude consumer and a glutted market around the world.
U.S. crude futures hit a new two-week low today at $37.84 a barrel, down fifty cents on the day, or 1.25%, while Brent crude futures gave up over 40 cents, or one percent, moving down from $40 to $39.64 a barrel, with a session-low at $39.57 a barrel.
The dollar tried to recover some of its vast losses made this week following Federal Reserve Chair Yellen's dovish outlook on monetary policy, with the greenback index inching up 0.16% to hover around 94.94, not fat from deep lows hit earlier, but the losses against Japan's yen continued, bleeding a further 0.11% to hover around 112.32.
Copper prices registered losses as an economic slowdown in China keeps affecting the industrial metal's prices negatively, with the futures falling half a percentage point to trade at $2.178, while gold eked out another profit of 20 cents to trade at $1,228.60.
Investors wait for an array of data later today, with German unemployment change expected to fall again in February by six thousand, adding to January's 10K fall, and indicating a strong labor market in the Eurozone's biggest economy, a positive sign for the euro.
From the U.S., unemployment claims are forecast to have risen marginally last week to 266 thousand, from the previous reading's 265K, but still far down from 300,000, a mildly positive sign for the greenback.