The gains in the dollar are driven by rising expectations for higher interest rates that will make dollar-denominated commodities more expensive for foreign investors.
WTI crude is down 0.49% to $49.24 per barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange, while Brent crude is declining 0.65% to $49.27 per barrel on the Intercontinental Exchange this afternoon.
Oil prices are weakening even though U.S. energy firms took two oil rigs out of production this week, lowering the total rig count to 316, according to data from Baker Hughes (BHI), Reuters reports.
Investors remain concerned that higher crude oil prices will lead to a boost in production that will bring prices back down, Price Futures Group energy markets analyst Phil Flynn told Reuters.
Shares of Petrobras, a Brazilian state-operated oil and gas company, are also falling because of a weaker real.
The Brazilian currency is decreasing because of reports that suggest interim President Michel Temer and his political party attempted to suppress the corruption investigation surrounding Petrobras, Bloomberg reports.
Separately, Petrobras has a "sell" rating and a letter grade of D at TheStreet Ratings because of the company's deteriorating net income, generally high debt management risk, disappointing return on equity, weak operating cash flow and generally disappointing stock performance.
You can view the full analysis from the report here: PBR
TheStreet Ratings objectively rated this stock according to its "risk-adjusted" total return prospect over a 12-month investment horizon. Not based on the news in any given day, the rating may differ from Jim Cramer's view or that of this article's author.