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Oil edges lower; U.S. inflation, Chinese trade data in focus

Published May 08, 2023 09:08PM ET Updated May 08, 2023 09:14PM ET
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Investing.com -- Oil prices moved in a flat-to-low range in early Asian trade on Tuesday as investors turned cautious ahead of key U.S. inflation data this week, while trade data from major crude importer China was also in focus.

Crude prices rallied over 2% on Monday as a Federal Reserve survey of U.S. lending conditions showed that the collapse of several U.S. banks this year had not had an as profound impact on loan activity as feared.

This, coupled with a stronger-than-expected nonfarm payrolls report on Friday, helped ease some concerns over a severe U.S. recession this year, dispelling some of the pessimism that had rattled oil markets over the past three weeks.

But further gains in crude were limited, with prices still trading substantially down for the year as markets awaited fresh cues on the U.S. economy from inflation data due Wednesday. The data is expected to show that U.S. inflation eased further, albeit slightly, in April, and is likely to factor into the Fed’s stance on interest rates.

Brent oil futures rose 0.1% to $76.75 a barrel, while West Texas Intermediate crude futures fell 0.3% to $72.96 a barrel by 21:15 ET (01:15 GMT).

Markets were also awaiting Chinese trade data, due later in the day, for more cues on demand in the world’s largest oil importer. Signs of a slowing economic rebound in the country have been a key weight on oil prices in recent weeks, especially as recent data showed the country’s vast manufacturing sector unexpectedly contracted in April.

While transport activity in the country has picked up substantially after the lifting of COVID-19 restrictions, fuel demand has still remained shy of pre-COVID levels. This has raised questions over whether a recovery in China will spur global crude demand to record highs this year, as forecast by both the OPEC and the IEA.

Focus this week is also on the OPEC’s monthly report, due on Thursday, for any changes in outlook after the cartel unexpectedly cut supply earlier this year. The cartel had also warned that deteriorating economic conditions across the globe could potentially stymie demand this year.

Fears of slowing economic growth and oil demand had battered crude prices over the past three weeks, pushing them to 17-month lows.

Oil edges lower; U.S. inflation, Chinese trade data in focus
 

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Comments (4)
Ge K
Ge K May 09, 2023 12:45AM ET
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Air transportation numbers will be off the charts this Summer. Which means car rental numbers will be off the charts. And the cruise ship bookings are off the charts. So the producers of oil and petroleum products know this and well can you say higher oil prices next month? Buy UCO today and profit tomorrow.
Manish Kumar
Manish Kumar May 08, 2023 10:19PM ET
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we are heading toward 6200
Bhagwan Dass
Bhagwan Dass May 08, 2023 9:58PM ET
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No slow down in india.
Bhagwan Dass
Bhagwan Dass May 08, 2023 9:57PM ET
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india is father of us and china.see Indian data
 
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