Oil firms after two days of losses; eyes on Trump address

Oil firms after two days of losses; eyes on Trump address

Oil firms after two days of losses; eyes on Trump address

They saw a recent peak at $55.26 on Friday, which marked a roughly 2½-month high and created a point of chart congestion that prompted some consolidation, traders said.

US West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures gained 43 cents, or 0.8 percent, to $54.09 a barrel after posting a session low of $52.86 a barrel.

International Brent crude oil futures were at $62.05 per barrel, up 7 cents, after closing down 0.8 per cent in the previous session.

He said the API figures showing rising stocks "do little to silence the USA glut alarm bells". They also expect that gasoline and distillate inventories each posted gains of 1.7 million barrels.

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Another factor behind the oil market rally is the supply cuts imposed by the member-states of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) and allied oil producers.

OPEC and 10 partner producers outside the cartel agreed late a year ago to hold back crude output by 1.2 million barrels a day for the first half of 2019, in an effort to soak up a global supply glut and rebalance the market. The officials also said those oil-producing nations would debate the proposal during the week of February 18 Vienna, with the potential for a final deal when they meet in April.

United States sanctions on Venezuela have been viewed as supportive for prices by helping tighten global supplies.

"It would seem that the market is really not too anxious yet about the potential loss of Venezuelan barrels", analysts at JBC Energy wrote. The political turmoil raises the risk of disruption to Venezuela's oil output.

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This news may have been offset by robust U.S.jobs data and a stronger-than-expected ISM Manufacturing PMI report on Friday, but traders turned bearish on Monday when the government reported that new orders for USA -made goods unexpectedly fell in November amid sharp declines in demand for machinery and electrical equipment, suggesting a slowdown in manufacturing as 2018 ended.

At the same time, several European Union countries on Monday recognized Guaidó as Venezuela's interim leader.

Guyana, a country that now produces no crude, could pump more than OPEC member Venezuela in five years.

"The global oil supply/demand balance could shift from a current significant surplus to zero at the end of the year", Pictet Wealth Management analyst Jean-Pierre Durante wrote in a report.

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Venezuela's opposition is opening a US fund to receive the proceeds of oil sales, a key measure to secure revenue for its effort to dislodge President Nicolas Maduro, an opposition lawmaker said on Wednesday.

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