After rising to fresh 18-month high price levels, crude oil prices are slightly weaker in the early hours due to the inventory report. At 6:20 AM EST on December 29, the West Texas Intermediate crude oil futures contract for February 2017 delivery was trading at $53.84 per barrel—a fall of ~0.41%. The Brent crude futures contract for February 2017 delivery rose ~0.02% to $56.98 per barrel.
According to data released by the American Petroleum Institute on December 28, crude oil inventory levels rose by 4.2 MMbbls (million barrels) in the week ending on December 23. The report disappointed the market. Analysts expected the inventory levels to fall by 2.1 MMbbls. The market is looking forward to the U.S. Energy Information Administration’s inventory report. It will be released at 11:00 AM EST today. The SPDR S&P Oil & Gas Exploration & Production (XOP) fell 1.2% on December 28.
After a pullback on December 28, copper prices are stable in the early hours of December 29. At 6:30 AM EST on December 29, the COMEX copper futures contract for March 2017 delivery was trading at $2.52 per pound—a gain of ~0.58%. The decrease in China’s copper imports is weighing on the sentiment. However, expectations of increased demand from the US and China in 2017 are supporting the prices. The pullback in the US dollar also supported copper prices. The PowerShares DB Base Metals (DBB) and the SPDR S&P Metals & Mining (XME) fell 0.86% on December 28.
After rising for two consecutive trading days, gold (GLD) rose in the early hours due to the weaker dollar. The weaker dollar provides support to dollar-denominated commodities such as gold and silver. At 6:30 AM EST, the COMEX gold (GLD) futures contract for February delivery moved to $1,147.15 per ounce—a gain of ~0.54%. The silver futures contract for March 2017 delivery rose ~0.94% to $16.19 per ounce. Platinum and palladium moved higher in the early hours on December 29.