Crude Oil Prices Steady as Saudi-Russia Meeting Calms Market, Banking Crisis Stabilizes

James Hyerczyk
Updated: Mar 17, 2023, 13:12 UTC

Crude oil prices recover some ground after support measures from the European Central Bank and US lenders.

WTI Crude Oil

In this article:

Key Takeaways

  • Oil prices steady on Friday following Saudi-Russia meeting
  • Support measures help stabilize banking crisis that caused oil prices to fall
  • OPEC+ expects market to stabilize after financial-driven price weakness
  • WTI’s fall to less than $70 a barrel may boost demand as U.S. gov. considers refilling Strategic Petroleum Reserve
  • Analysts expect China’s demand recovery to support oil prices


U.S. West Texas Intermediate crude oil prices are flat, and the price action steady on Friday following a meeting between Saudi Arabia and Russia that calmed the market.

At 12:37 GMT, June WTI crude oil futures are trading $68.34, down $0.29 or -0.42%. On Thursday, the United States Oil Fund ETF (USO) settled at $60.06, up $0.04 or +0.07%.

Additionally, support measures helped stabilize a banking crisis that had caused oil prices to fall, putting the futures contract on course for their biggest weekly drop since December. The U.S. benchmark hit a more than one-year low on Wednesday, with a weekly decline of around 9%.

OPEC+ Expects Market to Stabilize Despite Financial-Driven Price Weakness

This week, the collapse of several banks and the expectation of a less aggressive increase in interest rates by the U.S. Federal Reserve put pressure on global assets, including oil prices.

However, prices recovered on Friday with support from the European Central Bank and U.S. lenders, a weaker dollar, and expectations of China’s demand recovery.

OPEC+ also attributed the price weakness to financial drivers rather than supply and demand imbalance, and a meeting between Saudi Arabia and Russia calmed fears.

The fall in WTI prices could spur the U.S. government to start refilling its Strategic Petroleum Reserve, while Commerzbank sees sufficient support for oil prices and OPEC+ may convene an extraordinary meeting soon.

Daily June WTI Crude Oil

Daily June WTI Crude Oil Technical Analysis

The main trend is down according to the daily swing chart. A trade through $65.89 will signal a resumption of the downtrend. A trade through $80.97 will change the main trend to up. Today’s session also begins with the market inside the window of time for a closing price reversal bottom.

June WTI crude oil futures are currently testing a long-term value zone at $68.76 to $61.27.

On the upside, the first target is a minor pivot at $71.73, followed by a retracement zone at $73.05 to $78.29.

Daily June WTI Crude Oil Technical Forecast

Trader reaction to the long-term 50% level at $68.76 is likely to determine the direction on Friday.

Bearish Scenario

A sustained move under $68.76 will indicate the presence of sellers. The first target is this week’s low at $65.89. This is a potential trigger point for an acceleration into $61.27.

Bullish Scenario

A sustained move over $68.76 will signal the presence of buyers. If this creates enough upside momentum then look for a surge into $71.73, followed by $73.05.

For a look at all of today’s economic events, check out our economic calendar.

About the Author

James is a Florida-based technical analyst, market researcher, educator and trader with 35+ years of experience. He is an expert in the area of patterns, price and time analysis as it applies to futures, Forex, and stocks.

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