Oil prices back above 90 on dual tailwinds

2023-10-18
Summary:

Middle East tension and Gaza hospital blast, with hundreds killed, raised concerns of oil supply disruption, causing oil price surge on Wednesday.

Oil prices surged on Wednesday as tension escalated in the Middle East after hundreds were killed in a blast at a Gaza hospital, sparking concerns about potential oil supply disruptions.

US crude stocks fell by about 4.4 million barrels in the week ended 13 Oct, according to API. That was much steeper than a 300,000 barrel draw that analysts had forecast.


US retail sales exceeded all forecasts and industrial production strengthened last month, indicating a bumpy road ahead for the Fed to bring inflation down to its target.


Retail sales rose 0.7% in September from the previous month, more than double Wall Street's estimates for 0.3% growth. The report came in as the job market remained robust.

US retail sales

Resilient demand is helping to shore up the nation’s manufacturers. An index of US industrial production rose in September to the highest level in nearly five years, led by strength in the mining and manufacturing sectors.


The Atlanta Fed’s GDPNow forecast predicted that the economy grew an annualised 5.4% in the third quarter, the strongest since the end of 2021. Meanwhile Morgan Stanley raised their growth forecast to 4.9%.


China's economy also grew faster than expected in the third quarter, suggesting the economic stimulus has filtered through to business activity. Positive signs against the backdrop of high interest rates point to a consistent oil demand recovery.

XBRUSD

Brent crude fluctuates around the 90 level, slightly below the strong resistance which stopped the upward trend at the beginning of this month. A break above 92 will signal potential further gains in the upcoming sessions.


Disclaimer: This material is for general information purposes only and is not intended as (and should not be considered to be) financial, investment or other advice on which reliance should be placed. No opinion given in the material constitutes a recommendation by EBC or the author that any particular investment, security, transaction or investment strategy is suitable for any specific person.

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