ANKARA , Nov 9 (AA/APP): Oil prices edged lower on Wednesday as market players focused on the economic downturn from lockdowns in China, the world’s largest oil-consuming country.

International benchmark Brent crude traded at $95.34 per barrel at 09.58 a.m. local time (0658 GMT), a 0.02% decrease from the closing price of $95.36 a barrel in the previous trading session.

The American benchmark West Texas Intermediate (WTI) traded at $88.87 per barrel at the same time, a 0.04% loss after the previous session closed at $88.91 a barrel.

Price declines in China have been primarily driven by concerns about demand as the country continues to impose lockdowns and other measures in accordance with its “zero-covid” policy.

In contrast to the market consensus of a 1.1-million-barrel increase, the American Petroleum Institute (API) reported its estimate of a surge of over 5.6 million barrels in US crude oil stocks late Tuesday.

A more-than-expected stockpile increase signals a drop in crude demand, weighing prices down.

The US Energy Information Administration (EIA) will release official oil stock data later Wednesday, and if a build in stock levels is confirmed, prices will fall.

However, investor concerns about a lack of supply limited further losses as EU countries prepare sanctions on Russian oil exports, which are set to take effect on Dec. 5 in response to Russia’s attack on Ukraine.

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