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WTI oil closed above $92 per barrel, on optimism that Spain may be a step closer to seeking bailout, while data after the close showed a much-bigger-than-expected rise in last week’s US crude inventories.
Brent oil traded at the highest premium in a year to NYMEX crude, amid concern that supplies from the North Sea and the Middle East will be disrupted and speculation that US stockpiles are increasing.
Crude oil inventories were up by 3.7mn barrels, distillate supplies rose 1.8mn barrels and gasoline inventories fell by 1.2mn barrels, as per the American Petroleum Institute report.
The EIA report due later today is expected to show an increase of +1.5mn barrels of crude.
US crude imports from Saudi Arabia hit a 4-year high of 1.425mn barrels per day in the first 7-months of 2012 and have dipped only 130,000 bpd since then.
Crude oil remains constrained but gained as European debt concerns soothed to an extent due to positive signs emanating from Spain. However growth still remains an issue.
Today in the Asian session, US bench marked crude oil futures prices are holding a level above $92/bbl in International market. Fall of crude oil stocks in Cushing Oklahoma Delivery Centre by more than 150K barrels might be supporting oil prices along with higher trading regional equity market. As per American Petroleum Institute, crude oil stocks have been climbed up by more than 3Million barrels in the last week, whereas draw down of gasoline stocks witnessed. Other than this, optimism of Spain bailout talk on tomorrow’s EU meet is adding positive cues in the shared currency euro which is ultimately supporting the trend in oil prices. On other side, concern of Supply disturbances in Middle East is supporting oil prices as prevailing sanctions on Iran has been further tightened by EU members on Monday meeting.
Most of the Asian equities are trading in a higher side by following trend of yesterday’s US equity market and better corporate earnings. Ahead of EU summit in the weekend, we may expect the shared currency to gain some points in todays driven by the economic releases which may ultimately support oil prices. Thereafter, in the US session, better housing data are likely to have positive impact on oil prices. Most importantly, today is the option expiry day in NYMEX which may create pressure on prices during US session where actual inventory report may play a role to limit the fall.