Oil rig


  • Oil fell as much as 5% on Friday after Presidnet Donald Trump said he had tested positive for COVID-19. That decline far outpaced other asset classes.
  • Trump’s test has no direct impact for the oil market right now, but it has brought into stark focus the risks to both supply and demand, analysts said.
  • Crude oil is set for its biggest weekly slide since the end of August and the price is approaching recent three-month lows.
  • Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.

Affter US president Donald Trump tweeted early on Friday morning that he and his wife had tested positive for COVID-19, global financial markets went into a tailspin. Stocks, cryptocurrencies, and industrial commodities slid sharply and gold and safe-haven Treasuries rallied.

But it was oil that took the hardest hit. 

The price of WTI crude oil plunged by as much as 5% at one point on Friday, while the S&P 500 slid just 1.7% at intraday lows, while the dollar index rose roughly 0.1%. That put crude on pace for its biggest weekly fall in weeks.

Trump’s positive COVID-19 unnerved investors, but has little direct, immediate impact on the broader financial markets, even with the presidential election just one month away now.

Crude is one of the most sensitive commodities to geopolitics and the economy, along with stocks and the dollar, but the reaction in the market on Friday was more in keeping with that to a direct supply or demand shock, than to a development in Washington DC. 

Here’s why the oil market seemingly took the news of Trump’s test so hard: 

With Covid-19 rearing its head, demand looks less rosy

Since falling to a historic negative $40 a barrel in April this year – when the coronavirus pandemic brought

RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper announced on Wednesday that bars, amusement parks and movie theaters can partially reopen starting on Friday under a new Phase 3 order.

The updated executive order that will remain in effect through Oct. 23 also allows fans to attend outdoor sporting events. Venues with more than 10,000 seats can operate at 7% capacity, while those with 10,000 or fewer people can open to 100 people or operate at 30% capacity, whichever is less.

But the increased reopening comes with restrictions on businesses as the state’s coronavirus case numbers have held steady but at higher-than-desired levels.


Mandy Cohen, the state’s top public health official, warned that the state’s progress in dealing with COVID-19 is “fragile.” Cooper acknowledged the concerns and pleaded with North Carolinians to comply with the state’s mask mandate and other safety measures.

“The key indicators we watch in North Carolina remain mostly stable, but I have to tell you that we see warning signs that the disease could spike again here and across the country,” Cooper said. “The virus continues to spread, so we must take the next steps methodically and responsibly.”

Cooper, who has adopted a self-described “dimmer switch” approach to reopening, has long kept many businesses closed in an effort to reduce coronavirus transmission and pave the way for K-12 public school students to resume in-person classes.

The governor earlier this month announced individual districts can choose to move to daily in-person classes for elementary school students starting on Monday. But in Wednesday’s news conference, Cooper did not provide a timetable for when the same opportunity would be afforded to students between the sixth and 12th grades.

“Don’t have a timeline on it, but just know that it remains a priority for us,” Cooper said.

North Carolina’s