Oil suffers longest weekly losing streak since 1986


U.S. oil futures on Friday settled below $41 a barrel for the first time since the Great Recession to suffer an eighth straight weekly loss—the longest streak of weekly losses since 1986.

Prices sank to intraday lows under $40 after data from Baker Hughes BHI, -3.62%  showed that the number of active U.S. oil drilling rigs rose 2 to 674 as of Aug. 21.

Weaker-than-expected Chinese manufacturing data and a sharp declines in the U.S. stock market also spurred worries about the outlook for energy demand.

West Texas Intermediate crude for October delivery CLV5, -2.37%  fell 87 cents, or 2.1%, to settle at $40.45 on the New York Mercantile Exchange. The October contract, which become the front month at Thursday’s settlement, posted a weekly gain of 6.2%.

Based on the most-active contracts, futures prices marked their lowest settlement since March 2, 2009 and saw weekly loss of 4.8%, their eighth weekly decline in a row.

Nymex prices haven’t seen a streak of that many weekly losses since the 10-week stretch of losses that ended on March 7, 1986, according to FactSet data. (by Myra P. Saefong and Eric Yep, Market Watch)