17 Apr

Crude Oil Futures: Key Drivers on April 17–20

WRITTEN BY Gordon Kristopher

Energy calendar 

On April 18, 2018, the EIA will release its weekly US crude oil production data. Baker Hughes (BHGE), a GE company, will release its US crude oil rig count report on April 20, 2018.

All of these events could influence oil prices this week. WTI oil prices increased ~8.5% last week—the highest weekly gain since July 2017. The Vanguard Energy ETF (VDE) increased ~6.4% during this period. VDE aims to follow the performance an index of energy stocks. The iShares Global Energy ETF (IXC) increased 4.7% last week. IXC aims to track the performance of an index of global equities in the energy sector.

Crude Oil Futures: Key Drivers on April 17–20

US crude oil futures’ peak  

The active WTI crude oil futures contracts closed at $67.39 per barrel on April 13, 2018—the highest settlement since December 2014. Geopolitical tensions in the Middle East, production cutsstrong demand, and supply outages have supported oil prices.

Bearish drivers  

Record US oil production and a larger-than-expected rise in Cushing inventories could weigh on oil prices this week.

Bullish drivers  

Geopolitical tensions between the US and Iran, unexpected supply outages, and the expectation of a production cut extension into 2019 could support oil prices in the next few months.

Crude oil futures’ moving averages  

May 2018 WTI oil futures were trading above their 20-day, 50-day, and 100-day moving averages on April 16, 2018, which suggests that prices could trend higher.

Read Crude Oil Prices Hit the Highest Level since December 2014 and Key Fundamental Catalysts for US Natural Gas Traders for the latest updates on crude oil and natural gas.

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