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New month, fresh hopes

Markets work in mysterious ways. The epidemic that originated from China shows no signs of abating yet risky assets performed one their biggest daily jumps yesterday. The US stock markets strengthened around 5% yesterday and European stock index futures are also on the rise this morning. Oil tracked equities and WTI gained nearly $2/bbl to [...]

2020-03-03T23:16:42+00:00March 3rd, 2020|

Sellers return en masse

The desperate search for clues about the impact of the coronavirus epidemic continues. This search at the moment appears to be futile. It is simply impossible to predict with great confidence what the economic effect of the epidemic will be. All one can do is to take daily or weekly snapshots and try to figure [...]

2020-02-26T07:48:33+00:00February 25th, 2020|

Premature Optimism

The impression on the impact of the Covid-19 based on last week’s price movements was as confusing and uncertain as the containment of the virus itself. The general fall in the stock markets and the 3.7% jump in gold suggested that investors remained concerned about the economic implications of the outbreak. The Shanghai Composite index, [...]

2020-02-26T07:49:07+00:00February 24th, 2020|

The middle of the barrel

Supply issues are irrelevant at the moment. The chairman of the Libyan National Oil Corporation suggested that his country’s production has already fallen to 400,000 bpd from well above 1 mbpd and will plummet to 72,000 bpd soon unless the blockade of its pipelines and export terminals by forces loyal to General Khalifa Haftar are [...]

2020-01-23T13:21:00+00:00January 23rd, 2020|

Ready, set, cut!

They met; they cut; and the market paid no attention. OPEC day turned out to be an underwhelming affair if the price action is anything to go by. Indeed, the two leading crude markers ended the session little changed. This is in spite of the fact that the OPEC+ producer alliance is bracing for deeper supply [...]

2019-12-06T14:05:27+00:00December 6th, 2019|

A Bullish Cocktail

The noises coming out of Washington have been very confusing lately. A bigger than normal dose of uncertainty surrounds the trade policy of the US administration. It all started last Friday when President Trump demonstrated its support for the Hong Kong protesters. This week he raised the possibility of not striking any deal with China until [...]

2019-12-05T11:56:19+00:00December 5th, 2019|

The Trump waiting game

Like the Grinch, the season of goodwill seems lost on the US President. We are barely halfway through the week and the self-declared “Tariff Man” has already made a series of protectionist moves. On Monday, he made the surprise announcement that tariffs on steel imports from Brazil and Argentina would be restored. As if for [...]

2019-12-04T13:41:04+00:00December 4th, 2019|

Tariffs here, tariffs there, tariffs everywhere

From a bull’s perspective yesterday’s gains in the oil market actually feel like losses. Friday’s massive expiry related price falls was meant to be a one-off and the market was expected to recover yesterday. It duly did so in the early part of the trading session. The strength that took Brent $1.60/bbl above Friday’s settlement [...]

2019-12-03T10:29:21+00:00December 3rd, 2019|
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