Oil Stock Alert: Why Are XOM, CVX, MRO & OXY Stocks Down Today?

Oil inventories are falling today as investors bet China’s Covid-19 containment measures will reduce the country’s oil demand. Specifically, after China implemented shutdowns in parts of Beijing, the price of West Texas Intermediate crude oil began to fall. It is currently down 6.5% at $95.50.

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So what’s going on with oil stocks today?

Well, for over a month, Wall Street focused on the lockdowns the Chinese government imposed on Shanghai. Now it looks like the government is starting to take similar action in the country’s capital, Beijing. Additionally, yesterday 51 people died of Covid-19 in Shanghai, setting a record.

Likely adding to concerns about falling demand for oil, the IMF last week lowered its global growth forecast for 2022 to 3.6%, well below its outlook for expansion of 4.4% in January.

What’s going on with oil stocks today?

On a positive note for oil stocks, two companies that provide tools for oil exploration and production recently reported strong first quarter results. Schlumberger (NYSE:SLB) reported higher-than-expected first-quarter revenue and earnings per share on April 22 and noted that it posted its highest first-quarter margins in about seven years. Halliburton’s (NYSE:HAL) First-quarter EPS was 1 cent higher than analysts had expected on average. Its net profit jumped to $263 million last quarter, well above the $170 million it generated in the same period a year earlier.

In the morning talks Exxon Mobil (NYSE:XOM) fell 6.8%, Chevron (NYSE:CLC) fell 4.7%, Marathon Oil (NYSE:MRO) fell 8.4% and western oil (NYSE:OXY) fell 7.5%.

As of the date of publication, Larry Ramer had (neither directly nor indirectly) any position in the securities mentioned in this article. The opinions expressed in this article are those of the author, subject to InvestorPlace.com Publication guidelines.

Larry Ramer has researched and written about US stocks for 15 years. He was employed by The Fly and Israel’s largest business newspaper, Globes. Larry started writing columns for InvestorPlace in 2015. Some of his highly successful contrarian picks include GE, solar stocks and Snap. You can reach him on StockTwits at @larryramer.

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Felix J. Dixon