Oil prices suffered significant losses at the mid-week trading session in London. Oil traders are virtually going short on macros revealing an unexpected build in U.S. crude inventories.
The surge in U.S oil inventories was attributable to the unprecedented cold snap that hit a key energy hub in the world’s largest economy during the previous week thereby pausing gasoline demand from refineries that were forced to close down.
At the time of writing this report, Brent crude was down 0.60% hovering around the $64 per barrel.
However, both major oil benchmarks remained above the $60 price levels.
The most recent data from the American Petroleum Institute revealed a surge of 1.026 million barrels for the week ending Febuary.19. Oil experts had earlier anticipated a 5.372-million-barrel drop.
Stephen Innes, Chief Global Market Strategist at Axi in a note to Nairametrics spoke on prevailing market conditions weighing on the black hydrocarbon
“With excessively stretched positioning and highly susceptible to any negative news, WTI dropped towards the $61 level after the API stockpiles jumped +1.026 million barrels versus the previous draw of 5.8 million barrels during the period ended on February 19.
“Although the commodity prices dropped following the bearish stockpile data, bulls probably won’t be charging back to the pen en masses as the smoldering embers around the Middle East powder keg threaten to ignite once again as the US-Iran conflict continues to simmer but at a higher heat level today.”
What to expect: Still, Oil pundits expect more visibility on oil traders move at the end of next week with the next round of monthly OPEC+ meetings. Outside of a rise in geopolitical risk, upside momentum could be limited in the coming days as oil traders wrestle with OPEC+ next move.
Oil prices stay on course as Saudi’s Energy Minister reassures traders
British based oil contract traded at about $63 a barrel while the WTI futures were trading slightly below the $60 price level.
Crude oil prices remained relatively firm at the early hours of Friday’s trading session as oil traders digested Saudi Arabia’s defense of OPEC+ plans in raising output thereby capping gains.
At press time, the British based oil contract traded at about $63 a barrel while the West Texas Intermediate futures were trading slightly below the $60 price level.
Saudi energy minister Prince Abdulaziz bin Salman recently revealed that there were no pressing concerns of demand/supply dynamics changing gear amid the gradual boost in outputs in an interview aired on Thursday, adding that OPEC+ had all ammunition put in place to change course if necessary. OPEC+ will continue to meet monthly on reviewing the energy market supply dynamics.
Stephen Innes, Chief Global Market Strategist at Axi in a note to Nairametrics spoke on the prevailing market sentiment amid macros pointing to more oil supplies hitting the sensitive energy market and an upsurge in COVID-19 caseloads.
“Positioning is much cleaner, although the market remains directionally long oil. However, the sudden calm and drop in volatility have attracted passive investors back to the fray as the market structure around prompt spreads start to tighten and the dollar begins to roll over.
“Still, the conflicting signals around OPEC+ supply coming back to market amid spiking coronavirus case numbers in India plus parts of Canada as well as Tokyo backtracking into the lockdown Abyss, together with reports linking the UK’s Covid-19 vaccine workhorse to the higher frequency of blood clots, continues to hold the bulls at bay.”
What to expect: The most recent OPEC+ agreement on releasing barrels into such present demand was not out of place – suggesting the futuristic price of oil might range between the $60 -$70 price levels with production normalization vs current high excess production capacity taken into consideration.
Gold retreats from 2-week high amid a stronger U.S economy
Gold futures edged lower by 0.20% to trade at $1,739.45 an ounce amid falling U.S. Treasury Yields.
Gold’s price retreated from its two-week high as positive data from the world’s biggest economy bolstered hopes for a quick economic recovery from COVID-19, despite the recent lockdowns seen in Western Europe.
At press time, Gold futures edged lower by 0.20% to trade at $1,739.45 an ounce amid falling U.S. Treasury Yields, while the greenback slipped to a two-week low.
Just recently, the job openings report in the U.S for February posted a two-year high of 7.367 million; hiring also recorded its biggest surge in 9 months.
However, Stephen Innes, Chief Global Market Strategist at Axi, in a note to Nairametrics, spoke on the prevailing market conditions giving the precious metal the needed support in the mid-term amid the falling value in the U.S dollar.
“Gold jumps as the US dollar and yields fall. And with the dollar not responding to “US exceptionalism,” it still leaves room for further price climbs.
Gold prices firmed in volatile Asian and European trading as the Easter holidays ended and full trading got back underway. Gold received support from the FX markets as EUR/USD retained Monday’s gains, putting gold on a firm footing.
And as we all know, gold in a dollar weaker environment tends to remain tethered at the hip to the Euro.”
Metal pundits argue that the current weakening of the greenback and a recent easing in yields will effectively provide the accelerant to a rally in gold and silver in the midterm.
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