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Brent Still Threatens $60 Handle

Brent Still Threatens $60 Handle

Crude oil prices declined on Wednesday amid reports that Saudi Arabia goes ahead of schedule to make the repairs to its oil facility. Besides, Trump left the door open for a path to de-escalation with Iran, which added to the negative sentiment in the market. As such, Brent briefly dipped to the $60.30 area but managed to finish around $61.50.

Meanwhile, the EIA report showed a second straight week of rising crude oil inventories. Last week, the stockpiles increased by 2.4 million barrels compared with expectations for a 249,000-barrel decline while gasoline inventories rose by 500,000 barrels. Crude production rose by 100,000 barrels per day, back to its record weekly rate at 12.5 million bpd. The bearish report sent the prices even lower, with the subsequent recovery due to a better sentiment in the US stock markets.

In the short term, Brent crude could resume the downside move should the prices fail to get back above the $62 handle. Despite some optimism over the US-China trade talks, it is not enough to fuel demand for Brent. Moreover, the greenback remains strong and could accelerate the rally should US GDP data surprise to the upside. So the possibility of a break below the $60 psychological support persists.

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