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Oil: 2018 Might Be the Worst Year since 2016

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Worst year for oil since 2016?

So far in 2018, US crude oil prices have fallen 25%. Crude oil prices are in the red on a year-to-date basis for the first time since 2016. On October 3, US crude oil active futures settled at $76.41 per barrel—the highest closing level since November 21, 2014. Concerns about a global economic slowdown might have dragged oil prices. On December 28, the Brent-WTI spread fell below $7 for the first time since August 23, which might indicate rising glut outside the US. Going into 2019, the OPEC and non-OPEC deal might alter the global oil supply situation.

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US crude oil last week

On December 21–28, US crude oil February futures fell 0.6% and closed at $45.33 per barrel on December 28. The recovery in US equity indexes might have limited the downside in oil in the week ending December 28.

Important prices points

For US crude oil prices, the 20-day and 50-day moving averages at $49.57 and $56.46, respectively, are the important resistance zone. On the upside, the closing level of $47.77 would be important for US crude oil until January 4.

Any changes in US crude oil prices could be important for US equity indexes like the S&P 500 (SPY) and the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DIA), which we’ll discuss in Part 2.

A fall in oil prices could have a negative impact on oil-weighted stocks. EOG Resources (EOG), Apache (APA), and Hess (HES), the weakest among the oil-weighted stocks, returned 0.3%, -0.8%, and -2.7%, respectively, last week.

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