Oil price hits highest level in 2019

04 April, 2019, 16:02 | Author: Mary Valdez
  • U.S crude oil

Oil prices steadied on Wednesday after Brent pushed towards a almost five-month high of $70 a barrel on OPEC-led supply cuts and USA sanctions, with gains capped by a surprise increase in American inventories. Their session high was $69.96, the highest since November 12, when they traded above $70, Trend reports citing Reuters.

Brent for June settlement rose 24 cents to $69.61 a barrel on the ICE Futures Europe exchange as of 1:17 p.m.in London, having earlier climbed to $69.96.

The global benchmark crude's premium over WTI traded at $6.86 a barrel. "Reduced supplies from the producer group will go a long way to cementing the tighter fundamental backdrop".

OPEC's output hit a four-year low in March. Analysts and traders were looking for a smaller draw in gasoline inventories of 1.542 million barrels for the week.

As the U.S.is pressuring countries to follow its lead on sanctions against Iran and Venezuela, low output from both countries are fueling the rise in oil prices.

Iran, OPEC's third-largest producer, along with Venezuela and Libya, were exempt from the OPEC+ agreement due to USA sanctions imposed on Iran, and the political situation in Venezuela and Libya, all where economies have been hit hard.

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Once again, the opinions of crude experts were proven on Wednesday to be spectacularly wrong: despite a Reuters poll estimating that crude stocks in the USA fell 400,000 barrels last week, commercial crude inventories in fact surged by 7.2 million barrels in the week through March 29 - and this caused a slight dip in oil prices.

Finally, at 14:30 GMT on Wednesday, traders will get an opportunity to respond to the U.S. Energy Information Administration's weekly inventories report.

Official numbers from the U.S. Department of Energy (DoE) are due out later on Wednesday.

Sigal Mandelker, U.S. under-secretary of the Treasury for Terrorism and Financial Intelligence, told reporters in Singapore on Friday that the United States had placed further "intense pressure" on Iran.

This article is for general information purposes only. Kitco Metals Inc. and the author of this article do not accept culpability for losses and/ or damages arising from the use of this publication.

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