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Crude Oil Prices - Weekly Outlook: Feb. 18 - 22

CommoditiesFeb 17, 2019 12:10
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Investing.com - Oil traders will continue to monitor global crude supplies and the outlook for energy demand in the week ahead amid indications that OPEC-led output cuts have helped tighten an oversupplied market.

Market players will also be keeping abreast of the next round of trade talks between the U.S. and China in Washington this week to see if any more news materializes ahead of a March 1 deadline on new tariffs.

The U.S. and China are the world’s two largest oil consuming nations. Hopes that the two sides would hammer out an agreement resolving their protracted trade war helped to ease worries about energy demand.

Futures rallied for the fourth straight day on Friday to reach their best levels of the year.

International Brent crude oil futures jumped $1.68, or 2.6%, to settle at $66.25 a barrel by close of trade. It earlier rose to its strongest level since Nov. 20 at $66.39.

For the week, Brent prices saw a gain of about 6.6%, its best weekly performance since 2019 began.

Meanwhile, U.S. West Texas Intermediate crude ended Friday's session up $1.18, or 2.1%, at $55.59 a barrel. WTI earlier rose to a three-month high of $55.87.

The U.S. benchmark rose about 5.4% on the week.

After ending 2018 in freefall, oil prices have rallied approximately 16% to start the year, boosted by efforts by global producers to cut supply.

In December, OPEC and a group of 10 producers outside the cartel, led by Russia, agreed to collectively cut production by a total of 1.2 million barrels per day during the first six months of 2019.

Top exporter and OPEC's de-facto leader Saudi Arabia recently pledged to cut even more production than the deal called for.

The cuts come alongside involuntary production curbs as a result of U.S. sanctions on Venezuelan and Iranian crude, along with curtailed Libyan output because of civil unrest.

"Looking ahead, the prognosis for Venezuela and Iran remains skewed to the downside. As such, they should continue to act as important pillars of price support," said Stephen Brennock of oil broker PVM.

Ahead of the coming week, Investing.com has compiled a list of the main events likely to affect the oil market.

Monday, Feb. 18

There will be no floor trading on the Nymex because of Washington's Birthday. All electronic transactions will be booked with Tuesday's trades for settlement.

Wednesday, Feb. 20

The American Petroleum Institute is to publish its weekly update on U.S. oil supplies.

Thursday, Feb. 21

The U.S. Energy Information Administration will release its weekly report on oil stockpiles.

Friday, Feb. 22

{{0|Baker Hughes}} will release weekly data on the U.S. oil rig count.

-- Reuters contributed to this report

Crude Oil Prices - Weekly Outlook: Feb. 18 - 22
 

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