Crude Oil Price Outlook Brightens, Trending Higher

Crude oil price, news and analysis:

  • News that the number of new coronavirus cases in China has fallen for a second successive day is helping oil prices on hopes that the outbreak will have less impact on global demand than once feared.
  • Moreover, the trend higher may well continue as China prepares to cut its benchmark interest rate and hopes persist that OPEC+ may cut supplies further.

Crude oil price outlook positive

The outlook has brightened for the price of US crude oil – West Texas Intermediate, or WTI – as a recovery that began on February 10 has developed into a trend higher that looks likely to continue for a while yet. That recovery has taken the price from a February 10 low of $49.57 per barrel to almost $53 at the time of writing but remains way below the high of $65.46 reached early in January and which is a possible long-term target.

US Crude Oil Price Chart, Two-Hour Timeframe (February 5-19, 2020)

Chart by IG (You can click on it for a larger image)

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Several factors are responsible for the advance:

  • The number of new coronavirus cases in China has fallen for a second successive day, suggesting the hit to global demand from the outbreak may be less than once feared,
  • China is reported to be poised to cut its benchmark loan prime rate Thursday to ease the strain on its companies,
  • The OPEC+ group of OPEC members and their allies is to meet in Vienna on March 6 and is reported to be considering an advisory panel recommendation to cut supply by a further 600,000 barrels per day,
  • Oil output from Libya has dropped sharply because of a blockade of its oilfields and ports, and
  • The US has imposed sanctions on a unit of Russia’s Rosneft in an attempt to keep Venezuelan crude from the market.

After the recent run higher, a near-term correction in the crude price would be no surprise. However, the market is not yet overbought and traders might well see any slip lower as an opportunity to buy.

Oil – US Crude

Data provided by

of clients are net long.

of clients are net short.

Change in Longs Shorts OI
Daily 1% -17% -2%
Weekly -14% 5% -11%

— Written by Martin Essex, Analyst and Editor

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