Saturday, 13 April 2024

Oil stabilizes as the market awaits indicators of US interest rates

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Oil prices stabilized on Thursday as investors awaited US data that is expected to provide more indications about interest rate expectations.

According to Reuters, Brent crude futures for April fell 36 cents to $83.32 a barrel by 1157 GMT. The April contract expires on Thursday, and the most active May contract fell 39 cents to $81.76.

US West Texas Intermediate crude futures fell 26 cents to $78.28 a barrel.

Investors’ focus is on the Federal Reserve’s preferred measure of inflation, which is personal consumption expenditures data for January, among other economic data released on Thursday.

The Energy Information Administration said on Wednesday that US crude oil inventories rose last week, while gasoline and distillate inventories fell.

The administration said that crude inventories rose for the fifth week in a row, increasing by 4.2 million barrels to 447.2 million barrels in the week ending February 23, compared to analysts’ expectations in a Reuters poll for an increase of 2.7 million barrels.

Extending the voluntary oil production cuts from the OPEC+ alliance is also on the table.

But ANZ analysts said in a note, “As demand prospects remain uncertain, we believe that OPEC will extend the current supply agreement until the end of the second quarter.”

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