Oil prices seesaw as United States trade dispute with China rattles market
11 Апреля, 2018, 12:39 | Author: Martin Tyler
Both have erased their losses from last week, when concerns over a possible trade war between the two largest economies contributed to declines of more than 4 percent.
Oil markets stabilised on Monday after slumping around 2 percent last Friday on concerns over an intensifying trade dispute between the United States and China, as well as increased US drilling activity.
But future USA involvement in the Middle East could interrupt crude supply chains and make it hard for producers to ship overseas, sparking a bid for oil on Tuesday.
In physical oil markets, OPEC's number two producer Iraq said on Monday that it is keeping prices for its crude supplies in May steady.
US West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures for the May contract edged higher by 1.2 percent to $64.22 per barrel, while global benchmark Brent futures for June delivery climbed by 1.2 percent to $69.53 per barrel.
Brent crude futures LCOc1 fell to $70.80 per barrel at 0702 GMT, down 23 cents, or 0.3 percent, from their last close.
There are also concerns that the United States could renew sanctions against Iran, a major Middle East oil producer.
U.S. WTI crude futures were up 25 cents at $62.31 a barrel.
"Oil prices have been susceptible to the brewing trade tensions between China and the US ..."
Investors looked forward to data on USA crude inventories and Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) production levels.
Oil markets have been supported by healthy demand and supply cuts led by the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries.
Official data from the Energy Information Administration will be released today, amid forecasts for an oil-stock gain of around 0.2 million barrels.
However, soaring United States crude production C-OUT-T-EIA, which has jumped by a quarter since mid-2016 to 10.46 million barrels per day (bpd), is threatening to undermine OPEC's efforts to tighten the market and prop up prices. Analysts polled by S&P Global Platts expect the agency to report a weekly rise of 100,000 barrels in crude stockpiles, along with declines of 2 million barrels in gasoline and 1.2 million barrels in distillate supplies.
"Oil prices remain rangebound with WTI oil right in the middle of the $60-$65 per barrel range that has largely held since January of this year", said William O'Loughlin, investment analyst at Australia's Rivkin Securities.
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Trade Tensions Weigh on Crude Prices
After the Easter break, oil prices started the week on a weaker note as geopolitical development exacerbated operational concerns. The API report also showed a build for gasoline for the week-ending March 30 of 1.123 million in gasoline stockpiles.