U.S. Energy Department Releases More Crude from SPR Following Brent Price Spike

The U.S. Energy Department announced the release of another 400,000 barrels of crude oil from the country’s Strategic Petroleum Reserve (SPR). The released amount will be exchanged to Atlantic Trading and Marketing, a subsidiary of French energy giant TotalEnergies. This has become the fifth exchange since the Biden Administration announced in Novemeber it would release up to 50 million barrels from the SPR.

Companies that receive crude oil through the SPR exchange agree to return the amount they received with interest.

After a continuous fall since the Administration’s announcement, Brent prices have started to rise again and hit their highest level since 2014 at above $87 a barrel. The price hike has come amid supply worries following the Yemeni Houthi group’s drone attack on the United Arab Emirates.

The Energy Department has released 8 million barrels so far. It also announced the results of a sale of 18 million barrels this month.

For the first time, the United States has made an effort for a combined release of SPRs in November to drop oil prices. The Biden Administration contacted big consumers of Asia including Japan, India and South Korea, as well as China. China recently announced it would release some reserves from its SPR around the Lunar New Year holidays.

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