According to reports by Reuters, oil prices on Monday continue to remain low amid worries that the ongoing US-China trade war scenario could push the world economy to a broad recession. The prices already hit their lowest bottom this year, according to reported figures last week. In the wake of mounting tension however, oil supply cuts by OPEC hoped to lend some support to the dropping prices.
According to statistics, US West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures stood at $58.42 per barrel today morning. The price has dipped 21 cents, or 0.4%, from previous records. Meanwhile, Brent crude futures, the international yardstick for oil prices, stood slightly stronger at $68.73 per barrel, a slight nudge up by 4 cents from last reported.
Jeffrey Halley, senior market analyst, futures brokerage, OANDA Singapore said, “Sentiment remains fragile and vulnerable to any deterioration in U.S.-China trade frictions.”
Besides the stock markets, the trade war seems to have left its impact on slowing oil demand as well. As per the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS), data released on Monday revealed that China’s oil firms registered lower profits last month because of lesser demand and corresponding lower production.
Edward Bell, commodity analyst, Emirates NBD bank stated, “The impact from a trade war is a more medium-to-long-term issue and December spreads weakened sharply over the last week. Some signs of low confidence are creeping into positioning data.”
Meanwhile, OPEC+, a group of oil producers led by the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC), has been consistently cutting oil supply since the beginning of this year with a view to constrict the market and in turn prod prices.
Bell also mentioned in his statement earlier that spot crude oil prices are likely to stop dropping further since the market was “pricing in lower supplies from OPEC+”.