Black gold no longer flames.
Oil prices fell sharply again on Tuesday, crushed by the economic slowdown in China but above all by the increasingly palpable prospect of an Iranian nuclear agreement, which would almost instantly release millions of barrels.
The price of a barrel of American West Texas Intermediate (WTI) for September delivery fell 3.22%, ending at 86.53 dollars, its lowest closing level since January 25, almost seven months.
As for Brent from the North Sea, due in October, it dropped 2.90% to 92.34 dollars, its lowest closing level since early February.
Talks continue with Iran
For Robert Yawger, of Mizuho, this new stall is "mainly linked to Iran".
European Union and United States officials were discussing the Islamic Republic's response on Tuesday to the EU's proposed text to revive the Iran nuclear deal, along with requests for changes.
Although the Europeans initially presented their version of the document as "final", discussions continued on possible amendments.
“It looks like they are really trying to come to an agreement,” observed Robert Yawger.
If successful, "it's the possibility of seeing a million barrels more per day on the market", underlines the analyst, and more in the medium term.
At the time of the United States' withdrawal from the original agreement in 2018, Iran was exporting about 2.45 million barrels per day, according to the US Congressional Research Service.
Some 100 million barrels on hold
Having been unable to export freely for four years, the ninth-largest producer in the world (according to the American Energy Information Agency) could also quickly release some 100 million barrels already pumped.
“If the Iran nuclear deal is revived, it could push (WTI) prices close to $80,” said Edward Moya of Oanda in a note.
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