Crude futures climbed by over $3 a barrel in the first four days of last week but settled lower Friday as unease over the status of US-China trade talks increased at the end of a week that saw prices reach their highest level since September. The higher prices came on signs of a tighter physical market and more rumors that OPEC+ would extend the production cuts. But the market is still awaiting direction from the U.S.-China trade war – every utterance in either direction regarding tariffs has an immediate price impact. ICE Brent January futures settled 58 cents lower day on day Friday at $63.39, while the NYMEX January light sweet crude futures contract settled down 81 cents at $57.77.
Peak Oil News will have limited posting this month as our editor, Tom Whipple, continues rebounding from his illness earlier this Fall. Thank you for your patience and continued support.
US futures fluctuated between $56 and $57.50 last week as stockpiles rose, the rig count dropped, and hopes for a breakthrough in the US-China trade negotiations kept coming and going. Brent rose above $63 a barrel on Thursday after China hinted at progress towards a trade deal with the United States. The 16-month trade war between the world’s two biggest economies has slowed economic growth around the globe and prompted analysts to lower forecasts for oil demand, raising concerns that a supply glut could develop in 2020.
On Wednesday, the price of oil came under pressure after the EIA reported a crude oil inventory build of 5.7 million barrels for the week to October 25. Analysts had expected a much smaller build of 729,000 barrels after a 1.7-million-barrel draw interrupted a string of five weekly inventory builds.