Mubasher: Oil prices rose on Thursday, paring some of the big losses recorded in the preceding session, amid “goodwill” signs of a thaw in the trade tensions between the US and China, according to Reuters.
By 7:38 am GMT, US Nymex crude futures rose by 0.32% to $55.93 per barrel (pb), while global benchmark Brent futures went up by 0.21% to $60.94 pb.
Thursday’s rally came after both benchmark contracts dropped sharply following reports that US President Donald Trump has considered relaxing sanctions on Iran.
However, prices rose after Beijing’s decision to exempt certain imports from the US, including anti-cancer drugs, which was followed by President Donald Trump’s delay to scheduled tariff hikes on billions of dollars of Chinese goods.
“The postponement of the next round of China tariffs by President Trump ... has the global growth story back in full swing,” OANDA senior market analyst Jeffrey Halley was quoted by Reuters.
These concessions came along with the Energy Information Administration’s (EIA) report of a 6.9-million-barrel drop in US crude stockpiles last week to 416.1 million, the lowest level since almost a year.
“Historical inventory patterns suggest that stocks should begin to hit seasonal bottom sometime in the next two-three weeks,” AxiTrader’s Asia Pacific market strategist Stephen Innes was quoted by the news agency.
In the meantime, markets are focusing on the European Central Bank’s (ECB) meeting due later in the day, as it is widely set to cut interest rates in order to shore up the ailing economy.