Fundamental Comment

Why oil prices rise despite increase in crude inventories?

Why oil prices rise despite increase in crude inventories

Oil prices fell during Wednesday trading, after the American Petroleum Institute (API) announced a sudden growth in crude oil inventories in the United States, but expectations of increased demand next year prevented further decline in prices.

As of 09:52 GMT, Brent crude futures slumped 0.71 percent at $65.63 a barrel to end four consecutive sessions of gains, while the highest level was recorded at $65.91.

Crude oil WTI futures was down by 0.99 percent at $60.27 a barrel, after four consecutive daily sessions of gains.

The decline follows gains of more than 1 percent in the previous session, as the announcement of a "Phase-one" trade agreement between the United States and China last week eased pressure on benchmark U.S. crudes.

The development of the trade war between the United States of America and China, which lasted nearly 16 months, directly affected the global economy negatively, where it was hit by a severe slowdown and declining demand in the markets,

Meanwhile, renewed hopes on the approach of the signing the (phase one) trade agreement between Washington and Beijing has helped oil prices to advance.

The U.S. Trade Representative said on Sunday that the trade deal with the Chinese side has been fully completed despite some necessary revisions, adding that exports to China expected to double over the next two years.

All of these positive developments in the trade issue prevented oil prices from sinking deeper after the U.S crude inventories data released on Tuesday.

U.S. crude inventories increased 4.7 million barrels in the week ended December 13 to 452 million, compared with analysts' expectations of a decline of 1.3 million barrels, the API figures revealed.

Later in the day, eyes will focus on the government EIA report, which may signal a drop by 1.5 million barrels last week, following an increase by 0.8 million barrels a week before.

Meanwhile, the dollar index, which measures the performance of major six currencies against the U.S dollar, resumed its rebound to 97.00 after hitting a low of 96.27 last week, the lowest since July 4.

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