Oil prices started the first trading week bullish. Oil bulls recouped some losses recorded at the previous session amid high hopes that OPEC+ will continue to limit output in order to curb fears on weaker soft demand, coupled with concerns that the COVID-19 pandemic seems to be out of control.
- At the early session in Asia, Brent Crude futures were up 1.1% and priced at $43.21 a barrel, while the U.S based oil contract, U.S. West Texas Intermediate crude, for December was priced at $40.66 a barrel – up by 1.32%.
Both oil benchmarks contracts ticked up by more than 8% last week on high hopes of a COVID-19 vaccine, coupled with strong reports from the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) and their allies including Russia, that it will stick to lower output early next year in order to keep energy prices relatively attractive.
OPEC+, in present terms, has reduced oil output by about 7.7 million barrels per day, with a compliance rate seen at 101% in October, greatly attributed to the Saudi Energy Minister, nicknamed “Oil Sherriff” as he battles oil speculators and keeps wary over oil producers.
OPEC+ is scheduled to hold its ministerial committee this Tuesday, which could elaborate on changes to oil output quotas when all the ministers meet on Nov. 30 and Dec. 1.
What they are saying
With a well-detailed analysis on the black fossil market, Stephen Innes, Chief Global Market Strategist at Axi, in a note to Nairametrics, spoke on the macros oil traders are riding on presently.
“All the while, oil prices are still riding the vaccine tailwinds supported by OPEC + backstops, as the two sturdy backstops are ruling out of the more worrying demand and price collapse scenarios.
“Last week traders speculated that the US could move into very rigid lockdowns over the holiday season, impacting road fuel demand over Thanksgiving and Christmas, so we are seeing some of those shorts give way at the open, as traders back some of those US lockdown worries and oil is climbing a bit.”
Oil traders are looking for the same trading patterns this week as last week, where optimism around key resistance levels quickly ebbs to pandemic realities. It is hard to escape the current virus realities when it comes to the prompt oil market prices.