Oil prices steady after 1% dip

Wall Street stock futures point lower amid anticipation of U.S. economic data

By Nadia Elbilassy | @Nadia Elbilassy | 28 February 2024

Market close
  • RBNZ surprises markets by maintaining cash rate at 5.5%, adjusting peak forecast to 5.6%, causing NZD to decline over 1%.

  • Australian dollar weakens as January inflation stays at 3.4%, missing market expectations of 3.6%.

  • Oil prices steady after 1% drop due to higher U.S. crude stocks; Brent at $82.32, and WTI near $78.04.

On the Market Watch:

Oil prices

Oil prices steady after 1% drop over a substantial increase in U.S. crude stocks, surpassing expectations, but the positive impact of a potential extension to OPEC+ supply curbs continued to support prices.

Brent crude was hovering $82.32 per barrel. Similarly, U.S. West Texas Intermediate was near $78.04. After both benchmarks had experienced a $1 decrease earlier in trading.


New Zealand's central bank surprised markets by keeping the cash rate steady at 5.5%, citing a more balanced risk to the inflation outlook. The Reserve Bank of New Zealand (RBNZ) also adjusted its forecast for the cash rate peak, lowering it to 5.6% from the previous projection of 5.7%.

The New Zealand dollar declined by over 1% to its lowest level since February 16, reaching $0.6093.

The Australian dollar experienced a decline following the release of data indicating that inflation maintained an annual pace of 3.4% in January. This figure remained unchanged from December and fell below market expectations of 3.6%.


Stock futures on Wall Street indicated a lower opening as investors awaited a slew of upcoming U.S. economic data that could influence the potential timing of Federal Reserve interest rate cuts in the coming year.

Focus in the market now shifts to the release of the January Personal Consumption Expenditures Price Index (PCE), a crucial inflation gauge scheduled for Thursday.