Oil market confused by mixed signals

15 Avril, 2019, 03:37 | Auteur: Auguste Feret
  • Image of oil daily chart

Oil prices have soared since the start of the year, due to a number of risk factors such as OPEC-led supply cuts, USA sanctions on oil exporters Iran and Venezuela and escalating fighting in Libya.

The report pointed to a slightly under-supplied market in 2019 if OPEC kept pumping at March's level.

The oil market also followed global stock markets higher after positive corporate earnings results from JP Morgan. Though the rig count itself is a lagging indicator, with additional production showing up with a five-to-six-week latency after new drilling is reported, it is an important gauge to market participants trying to determine if US output is surging again.

"While no industry lasts forever, the age of oil is far from over", Bernstein said.

WTI (oil futures on NYMEX) finally cracked the key resistance-turned-support at 64.00, as the sellers remain in command so far this Thursday, as the sentiment remains weighed down by mounting concerns over the economic slowdown and surging United States crude supplies.

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On a less-brighter note, the World Trade Organization recently slashed its estimates for 2019 economic growth by a staggering 1.1 percent.

The International Energy Agency on Thursday reported an even lower figure for Venezuela's March output and said the country's production is likely to fall further this month. "The decrease was more than the five-year average of 5.1 mb due to larger gasoline draws and a lower crude build. March preliminary data show a significant crude build in Europe", said the report. The plant supplies Italy with gas through the Greenstream pipeline. The producers are due to meet on June 25-26 to decide whether to extend the pact.

A fourth OPEC source said there were talks about ideas such as whether OPEC should continue with the cuts alone, a deal extension of only three months to keep Russian Federation on board or pumping more if prices rise further.

However, non-OPEC states in the group have complied at a rate of 64%, with Russian Federation lagging behind its target cuts. US drillers added 2 rigs in the latest week, bringing the national count to 833 rigs, oilfield services firm Baker Hughes reported on Friday.

On the demand side, Chinese data showed exports rebounded last month, driving US and euro zone bond yields to three-week highs and helping offset weaker imports and reports of another cut in German growth forecasts.

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