Oil held gains above $57 a barrel as a U.S. move to extend a trade truce with China raised hopes that the world’s two biggest economies would soon resolve their differences.
Futures in New York were little changed after rising 0.5 percent to a three-month high on Friday. President Donald Trump said in a tweet he’ll delay a tariff increase on Chinese imports that was set for March 1 after “substantial progress” in negotiations. Meanwhile, American drillers reduced the number of working oil rigs for the first time in three weeks.
Oil has rallied about 26 percent this year as production curbs by OPEC and its allies eased concerns over a supply glut. Prices are set to rally further as the output cuts and American sanctions on Iran and Venezuela have caused a shortage of heavy crudes refiners rely on, said Russell Hardy, chief executive officer of Vitol Group, the world’s largest energy trader. Still, record U.S. shale flows threaten to cap gains.
West Texas Intermediate for April delivery fell 15 cents to $57.11 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange at 12:41 p.m. in Tokyo. The contract added 30 cents to $57.26 on Friday, the highest close since Nov. 12.
Brent for April settlement was down 23 cents at $66.89 a barrel on the London-based ICE Futures Europe exchange. The contract rose 5 cents to $67.12 on Friday. The global benchmark crude was at a $9.78 premium to WTI.
Source : Bloomberg