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Brent Crude Oil Prices Decline Following Weak China Trade Data, Hampering Overall Oil Market Growth


Jan-2019 | Intense Research | Energy

Ups and downs have been observed by the oil market in the recent past. Brent crude oil prices dropped below $60/barrel recently following Chinese information displayed declining exports and imports in the largest trading nation of the world. International Brent crude oil prospects were at $59.78/barrel, down 1.2%, or 70 cents, from their previous close. The US WTI (West Texas Intermediate) crude futures were $50.96 per barrel, down 1.2%, or 63 cents. This is likely to hamper the growth of the global oil market in the coming period.

The December 2018 exports of China declined by 4.4% from the previous year, the highest monthly decline in 2 Years, as per the revealed official data, pinpointing to further declining in the 2nd-biggest economy of the world. Imports also decreased, dropping 7.6%, the highest drop since July 2016—among the drastic drops observed by the oil market.

Merchants stated the details dropped Asian stock markets and crude oil futures similarly, which had both displayed modest earnings before the drop. TS Lombard, an Economic research company, stated oil costs were limited as "the world economy is dawdling now... restricting the possibility for positive surprises in demand for oil and obstructing inventory reduction."

Ole Hansen, commodity strategy head at Saxo Bank, Denmark, stated "the decline recently observed in forward-looking economic information from the US to China and Europe" intended that the upside for crude oil futures was possibly restricted to $55 for WTI and $64/barrel for Brent.”

Nevertheless, the weak Chinese information opposed general support that the market has been obtaining since the year’s beginning from supply cuts from the OPEC (Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries) and few non-OPEC associates, comprising Russia. In the US, drillers slashed 4 oil rigs, bringing the sum down to 873, as said by Baker Hughes, an energy services company.

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