Oil market extends gains

oil barrel stack.oil price22 September 2016, Lagos –  Oil prices climbed Thursday, building on the previous day’s gains following a bigger-than-forecast fall in US stockpiles, and a plunge in the dollar after the Federal Reserve kept interest rates on hold.

The commodity had already rallied Wednesday after the US Department of Energy said crude inventories had tumbled by more than six million barrels last week.

That confounded market expectations for a gain of three million barrels and indicated a pick-up in demand in the world’s top oil consuming nation.

“This drop is expected to alleviate glut concerns and will further support the crude oil prices,” CMC Markets market analyst Margaret Yang wrote in a note. https://www.cmcmarkets.com/en-sg/news-and-analysis/market-analysts/margaret-yang-yan

At about 1100 GMT, the US benchmark West Texas Intermediate for November delivery was up 44 cents at $45.78, while Brent for the same month added 36 cents to $47.19.

Both contracts had climbed by more than two percent on Wednesday.

The gains were given extra momentum by a weaker dollar, which makes oil cheaper for people holding other currencies.

The greenback tumbled after the Fed said the US economy was improving and the argument for an interest rate rise was strengthening but more evidence of sustained progress was needed before any action was taken.

While broadly expected, the decision to hold borrowing costs at ultra-low levels was cheered across global markets, sending equities and higher-yielding currencies soaring.

News that oil giants Saudi Arabia, Iran and Qatar met at OPEC headquarters in Vienna to discuss production cuts ahead of next week’s informal producers’ meeting in Algeria also provided strong support to the crude rally.

OPEC and non-OPEC member states are due discuss in Algiers a global supply glut and overproduction that have hammered prices for more than two years, sending them to near 13-year lows at the start of 2016.

Previous efforts in April for a production cap fell apart after OPEC member Iran — which had just come out from years of Western nuclear-linked sanctions — refused to take part.

*AFP

About the Author