Brent slips past the $80 mark on stockpile build

An unanticipated build in Crude oil stockpiles sent oil prices lower while U.S. futures are poised to conclude the week in positive territory

By Nadia Elbilassy | @Nadia Elbilassy | 9 November 2023

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  • Disappointing trade figures from China also fueled concerns about weakened demand in the world's largest oil-importing nation.

  • Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell refrained from commenting on monetary policy during the U.S. central bank statistics conference on Wednesday.

  • Companies like Apple Inc, Microsoft Corporation, and Meta Platforms, saw gains of over 1% as bond yields declined.

Market watch of the day!

Oil prices

This week witnessed a significant plunge in crude prices, as Brent briefly dipped below the crucial $80 per barrel threshold. A confluence of factors seemed to conspire against oil markets including data from the American Petroleum Institute (API) revealing a substantial weekly increase in U.S. crude inventories since February, surging by over 11 million barrels in the week ending Nov. 3.

Disappointing trade figures from China, also lead to apprehensions about subdued demand in the largest oil-importing nation globally.

WTI was last seen near $75.67 whilst Brent slipped past the $80 mark to $79.90.

US Indices rally

US indices continue to rally as futures markets are anticipating that the Federal Reserve will maintain the current interest rates at its December meeting, despite Fed officials such as Fed Governor Michelle Bowman taking up a hawkish stance and reiterating that they may still need t increase the federal funds rate further to tackle inflation and align it with the 2 percent target.

The decline in bond yields also positively impacted technology stocks, with companies such as Apple Inc and Microsoft Corporation, and Meta Platforms observing gains of over 1%.

The S&P 500 extended gains after a long winning streak. With now investors closely assessing recent comments from Federal Reserve officials for hints on the interest rate trajectory and keeping a watchful eye on Treasury yields' direction.

During the U.S. central bank statistics conference on Wednesday, Fed Chair Jerome Powell refrained from commenting on monetary policy in his opening remarks. Another conference is scheduled for Thursday, where he is expected to address the topic.