Making collusion great again. The OPEC says that its recent move to cut oil production had nothing to do with greed, but they acted with a “noble goal” of rescuing the global oil market. These comments came from the UAE energy minister Suhail Al Mazrouei, who said it’s not about raising prices it is about the noble endeavor of working to reduce oversupply. Well, in a way he does have a point.
Buy the rumor and sell the fact. Many traders thought the run-up on crude oil was based only on the potential of an attack on Syria and fears that it would spin out of control. Yet, the run-up in oil has been about a lot more than just Syria; it's also about falling supply, rising demand and other geopolitical risk factors.
Mission accomplished. No, I'm not talking about the trade war, but we could be seeing progress on that, and not the attack on Syria, that has not happened, yet. No, we are talking about the global oil market rebalancing. The International Energy Agency that previously warned of lower for longer oil prices and warned last year that the oil price recovery was threatened by the possibility of weak demand now has changed its tune and is now saying that it is 'mission accomplished' for OPEC as oil stocks shrink at a record pace.
Crude oil prices have the potential to react strongly to supply disruptions because U.S. oil supply is below the five-year average. Crude prices surged to five-year highs after President Trump vowed to retaliate against Syria for a Chemical Weapons attack and taunted Russia about their threat to shoot down U.S. missiles if they were used against Syria.
Both yellow and black golds are currently finding support from heightened fear among investors that the United States and its allies may soon launch a military strike against Syria. This is in response to the suspected chemical weapons attack in the country. The fear is that there might be counterstrike by Russia, which could further damage Moscow’s relationship with the West.
Crude oil prices soared after we are seeing the reduced risk of a trade war but increasing risk of heating up the real war in Syria. After conciliatory remarks by Chinese President Xi Jinping promising to announce plans to open China's economy, including lowering tariffs for cars and enforcing the legal intellectual property and technology transfers of foreign firms in the country.
Crude oil bears are scattering after China is signaling they will start to open their markets and take steps to guard foreign intellectual property. The speech by the Chinese President seems to suggest that President Donald Trump’s tactics of playing hardball is having the desired effect. China, of course, had its currency pegged to the dollar until 2014 and has charged many countries unfair tariffs and realized that they were trying to defend undependable trade practices.
Crude oil is trying to hold ground after Friday’s fear-based market sell-off. Tariff fears and then talks of global growth fears after a sub-par jobs report, not to mention a rising rig count, sent oil lower. Yet, we also have current strong demand, falling OPEC productions and a possibility of a major reaction by the United States after Syria allegedly crossed the chemical weapons line in the sand.