Oil Prices Mixed as Traders Await More News on Trade Negotiations

09:57, 19 February 2019

Image: Offshore-oil-rig-platform.

Oil prices were mixed on Tuesday in Asia as traders await more news as new discussions regarding the trade war between U.S. and China are going to resume later this week.

U.S. Crude Oil WTI Futures was up 0.4% at $56.22 per barrel by 12:52 AM ET (05:52 GMT). International Brent Oil Futures traded 0.3% lower at $66.28 per barrel.

Oil Hits Highest Level in 3 Months on Hopes that the Trade Dispute May Be Resolved  

On Monday, oil prices hit their highest levels in three months on hopes that the U.S. and China may resolve their trade dispute. The movement of oil prices came after U.S. President Donald Trump and his Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping reported progress in the latest trade talks held in Beijing last week.

Citing unnamed analysts, Reuters said the slight downward correction today was driven by concerns about the health of the global economy this year.

Traders Will Focus on the Trade Meetings that Will Be Held in Washington


Image: Washington DC Capitol Buidling.

Investors will continue to focus on trade headlines this week as China's Vice Premier Liu He is scheduled to meet with U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer and other U.S. officials in Washington in the coming days.

Investors sentiment is slightly dampened ahead of the meetings after China's government accused the U.S. of "fabricating an excuse for suppressing the legitimate development" of Chinese enterprises.

The spokesman for the Chinese foreign ministry, Geng Shuang, said the U.S. is using "political means" to interfere in economic activity, which he deemed "hypocritical, immoral and unfair bullying."

Despite some caution around trade, global oil markets received some support since the beginning of 2019 from supply cuts led by the Middle East dominated Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) and top crude exporter Saudi Arabia.

Saudi Arabia cut production to 10.2 million barrels in January versus a target of 10.3 million. The oil exporter said it plans to restrict production by a further 400,000 barrels in March.

Sources: BusinessInsider.com, Investing.com, Bloomberg.com and Reuters.com.

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