What’s dragging on ASX 200 energy shares today?

Oil prices are plunging again.

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An image showing a red graph with a white arrow pointing downwards above three black barrels of oil to represent falling oil prices and ASX 200 energy shares

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Key points

  • ASX 200 energy shares are sliding today 
  •  Santos, Woodside Petroleum and Beach Energy shares are all descending 
  • Oil prices have declined following news of US plans to release some of its oil reserves 

ASX 200 energy shares are in the red today on the back of falling oil prices.

The S&P/ASX 200 Energy Index (ASX: XEJ) is down 0.68% at the time of writing. Meanwhile, the benchmark S&P/ASX 200 Index (ASX: XJO) is up 0.26%.

Let’s take a look at what is impacting ASX 200 energy shares today.

ASX 200 energy shares down

Oil prices are plunging again today, and so are the big ASX 200 energy shares. The Santos Ltd (ASX: STO) share price is down 1.21%, while Woodside Petroleum Ltd (ASX: WPL) is slipping 1.41%. Meanwhile, Beach Energy Ltd (ASX: BPT) shares have descended 1.45%.

The WTI crude oil price has fallen by 5.63% to US$101.75 a barrel. Brent crude oil has dropped 4.82% to US$107.98 a barrel, Bloomberg data shows. Natural gas prices are also slipping by 1.61%.

The value of oil is diving amid a plan by US President Joe Biden to release supply. The Biden administration is considering releasing one million barrels of oil per day from strategic reserves for several months, Reuters reports.

The Biden team is expected to provide more details on the plan on Thursday in the United States. The aim is to calm gasoline prices, which have surged since the Russian invasion of Ukraine on 24 February.

The Brent crude oil price has soared 15% since this date, Trading Economics data shows. On 8 March, Brent crude oil hit a high of US$127.98 a barrel.

Commenting on the potential oil release, SPI Asset management managing partner Stephen Innes said:

It’s a sentiment shock, but if recent history suggests anything the reserve release will only be a temporary fix and akin to putting a band-aid on a broken leg.

Which ASX energy giant has gained the most in 2022?

The S&P/ASX 200 Energy Index (ASX: XEJ) index has surged by 20% in the year to date. For perspective, the benchmark S&P/ASX 200 Index (ASX: XJO) is down 0.73% over the same timeframe.

Of the major ASX 200 energy shares, Woodside has enjoyed the strongest gains in 2022. The Woodside share price is up 41.6% year to date.

The Motley Fool Australia's parent company Motley Fool Holdings Inc. has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool Australia has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy. This article contains general investment advice only (under AFSL 400691). Authorised by Bruce Jackson.

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