Oil prices stabilize at the start of the week

Oil markets await Chinese economic data tomorrow

By Raed Alkhedr | @raedalkhedr | 3 July 2023

  • Oil prices have stabilized at the start of this week's trading

  • The US dollar index is currently stable and hovering around 101.60 levels

  • Investors are eagerly awaiting further first-quarter earnings results for US stock indices

Oil prices stabilize as investors await Chinese economic data to gauge global demand recovery

Oil prices have stabilized in the first few sessions of the week as investors await Chinese economic data to gauge signs of recovering demand in the world's second-largest oil consumer. Brent crude futures fell to $86.18 per barrel, while WTI remained near $82.33 per barrel. However, oil achieved its fourth consecutive weekly gain last week, marking the longest continuous series of gains since mid-2022.

The oil markets are waiting for signs of a global demand recovery. The International Energy Agency (IEA) expects demand in China to recover soon and account for most of the world's demand in 2023. However, the agency cautioned in its monthly report that production cuts announced by OPEC+ producers could exacerbate the expected oil supply shortfall in the second half of the year, harming consumers and the global economic recovery.

US dollar treads carefully amidst caution in the markets

The US dollar saw significant gains last week after a Federal Reserve member stated the need to continue raising interest rates. However, the dollar index stabilized at the beginning of this week, hovering near 101.66 levels, as a sense of caution dominated the greenback's trading.

This caution is likely due in part to recent comments by Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen, who expressed concern that US economic sanctions imposed on Russia and other countries could jeopardize the dominance of the dollar as targeted countries seek alternatives. Yellen emphasized that there is a risk associated with using financial sanctions linked to the role of the dollar, which over time could undermine the currency's dominance.

US stock indices steady as investors await first-quarter earnings results

US stock indices stabilized today as investors await further first-quarter earnings results. S&P 500 futures rose by about 0.14%, while the Nasdaq fell by 0.15%. Corporate earnings began with strong results, as JP Morgan and Wells Fargo exceeded market expectations. However, retail sales data were disappointing, showing a 1% slowdown in consumer spending in March.

The markets will closely monitor Bank of America and Morgan Stanley, which are expected to announce their quarterly earnings on Tuesday and Wednesday, respectively. Investors are paying particular attention to bank earnings to ensure that there is no banking crisis after the recent turmoil in Silicon Valley.