Winning Streak Continues for Crude Oil – All Eyes on API Figures!
Arslan Butt • 3 min read
During the Asian trading session today, WTI Crude Oil succeeded in extending its winning streak of the previous day, refreshing to its highest level in more than two weeks, well above $ 54.00, mainly due to the upbeat market mood and hopes of a global economic recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic. This instantly bolstered hopes of a recovery in the fuel demand, which contributed to the gains in crude. However, the bullish bias surrounding the crude oil prices could also be attributed to the latest reports from Saudi Aramco (SE: 2222), suggesting that the fuel demand will return to pre-COVID-19 levels later in the year. Apart from this, the crude oil prices also got some additional support immediately, after the major producers, like Saudi Arabia, expressed their willingness to cut crude output as per their commitments. Furthermore, the upticks in the crude oil prices were further bolstered by the optimism over the coronavirus vaccines and the probability of an additional US financial aid package. In the meantime, the bearish bias of the broad-based US dollar, triggered by the risk-on market sentiment, also lent some support to the crude oil prices, as the price of oil is inversely related to the price of the US dollar.
In contrast to this, the re-emergence of COVID-19 cases globally has pushed many countries to impose further restrictive measures, such as lockdowns, which have become a key factor that has kept a lid on any additional gains in the crude oil prices. WTI Crude Oil is currently trading at 54.11, and consolidating in a range between 53.47 and 54.32. Moving on, the traders seem cautious about placing any strong positions ahead of the US crude oil supply data from the American Petroleum Institute, which is due later in the day.
As we have already mentioned, the market trading sentiment extended its positive performance of the previous day, remaining supportive on the day, amid optimism regarding an additional US financial aid package. These hopes were boosted after a 2-hour meeting between US President Joe Biden and a group of ten Republican senators, to discuss a downsized COVID-19 stimulus package proposed by the group. However, US Republican Party Senator Susan Collins recently said that “The group of Republican US senators had productive discussions with Democratic President Joe Biden regarding COVID-19 relief, but they did not agree on a package.”
Besides this, another reason behind the positive performance of the market could also be attributed to the optimism over the rollout of vaccines for the highly contagious coronavirus. This was seen as one of the key factors that underpinned the crude oil prices. Meanwhile, the crude oil prices got an additional lift after major crude oil producers, like Saudi Arabia, indicated that they were willing to cut crude output as per their commitment
Across the ocean, another reason for the bullish bias surrounding the crude oil prices could also be the latest analyst reports suggesting that the winter demand is expected to be higher than usual in the US, amid one of the worst snowstorms to hit the North East region in years. On the USD front, the broad-based US dollar failed to stop its declining streak of the previous day, remaining depressed on the day, as the demand for safe-haven assets was still low, amid progress toward agreeing on the next US fiscal stimulus package. However, the losses in the US dollar helped crude oil to stay bid, as the oil price is inversely related to the price of the US dollar. By 11:36 PM ET (4:36 AM GMT), the US Dollar Index, which tracks the greenback against a bucket of other currencies, had dropped by 0.15%, to 90.890.
On the bearish side, the outlook for Asian transport fuels is getting worse with time, as the re-emergence of COVID-19 cases globally urges authorities to impose further restrictive measures, such as lockdowns, which in turn are dampening the hopes of a recovery of the fuel demand. This has become a key factor that has kept a lid on any additional gains in the crude oil prices. Moving ahead, market traders will keep their eyes on the US crude oil supply data from the American Petroleum Institute, which is due later today. In addition to this, the updates surrounding coronavirus vaccines and the US financial aid package could provide fresh direction for the commodity. Good luck!