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Oil Off to Slowest Start Since 1991 With Virus Fear Spreading

  • WTI crude fell 16% during January, the worst month since May
  • Russia ready to meet OPEC+ in February, according to Interfax
How One Village on the Volga Sowed Chaos in Europe’s Oil Market
Photographer: Andrey Rudakov/Bloomberg
Updated on

Oil is off to the worst start to a year since 1991, tumbling 16% in January on concern that the spread of coronavirus will curb demand for transportation fuels.

Futures fell 1.1% in New York on Friday, capping the worst month since May as investors were rattled by the fear of demand destruction after the World Health Organization declared the outbreak a global health emergency. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention called the virus an unprecedented public health threat.