US oil prices are at their lowest level in nearly a year. Gas is down 6% in a month

Diesel Fuel Is In Short Supply As Prices Surge
NEW JERSEY, USA - MAY 11: An aerial view of Phillips 66 oil refinery is seen in Linden, New Jersey, United States on May 11, 2022. (Photo by Tayfun Coskun/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images)
Originally Published: 28 NOV 22 07:02 ET

(CNN) — US oil prices have fallen to their lowest level since December 2021 on fears that protests in China against Covid-19 lockdowns will dent demand.

West Texas Intermediate crude oil futures, the North American benchmark, slid 3.2% on Monday to trade close to $74 a barrel, a level last reached in late December. Futures for Brent crude, the global benchmark, also dropped 3.3% to trade close to $81 a barrel. That’s its lowest level since January.

Global oil prices have fallen about 35% since June as strict coronavirus restrictions in China have kept demand weak, and as some of the world’s major economies have signaled, they are heading toward a recession.

That’s helped push down gasoline prices for American drivers.

The national average cost of a gallon of gas is now $3.55, down 0.3% from a day ago and by 5.7% from last month, according to the AAA. Crude oil prices are the biggest driver of US gasoline prices, according to the Energy Information Administration.

Thousands of protestors took to the streets across China over the weekend in a rare series of demonstrations against the country’s zero-Covid strategy.

One of the triggers for the protest was a deadly apartment fire in the Xinjiang region. Videos of the incident appeared to show lockdown measures had delayed firefighters from reaching the victims.

— Julia Horowitz and Jessie Yeung contributed reporting.

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