Crude Pauses After Excellent WeekCrude prices have leveled off, after posting strong mid-week gains. Crude is at its highest level since the end of September, but some analysts are cautioning that oil prices may have hit a ceiling.
Crude Remains Sensitive to EIA Inventories
The Energy Information Administration (EIA) crude inventories report has proven to be a reliable leading indicator for crude prices. WTI futures jumped 2.8% on Wednesday, in response to a surprise deficit in U.S. crude stockpiles. The EIA reported a deficit of 1.7 million barrels last week, compared to an estimate of 2.5 million. This marked the highest one-day gain since mid-September, since the huge gain of 12.8% on September 16, after the attacks on Saudi oil fields triggered a huge rise in crude prices. Still, the trend has pointed to surpluses in recent weeks, and another surplus in next week’s release could push crude prices lower.