WTI retreats from YTD tops, back below $54.00

  • Crude oil prices correct lower to the $53.60 region.
  • Baker Hughes weekly report next on tap in the US calendar.
  • WTI moved to 2019 highs on Thursday on OPEC cuts.

The barrel of WTI is grinding lower at the end of the week, extending the rejection from yesterday’s 2019 peaks beyond the $55.00 mark to the current $53.60 region.

WTI now looks to NFP, Baker Hughes

Crude oil prices are down for another session on Friday, as overnight results from the Chinese economy keep weighing on traders’ sentiment. In this regard, it is worth recalling that the Caixin Manufacturing PMI dropped further to 48.3 in January, reigniting fears of a slowdown in the largest oil importer in the world.

In the meantime, crude oil prices appear to have shrugged off yesterday’s news citing OPEC producers cut their oil output more than forecasted during January, while recent US sanctions on Venezuelan PDVSA seems already digested.

Later in the day, Baker Hughes will publish its weekly report on US drilling activity.

What to look for around WTI

Crude oil prices moved further north of the $55.00 mark on Thursday, recording at the same time new yearly peaks. Among supportive drivers for higher oil prices emerge the OPEC+ agreement to curb oil output coupled with persistent supply disruptions in Libya and sanctions against Venezuela and Iran. However, concerns over a global slowdown, particularly in China, and uncertainty in the US-China/US-EU trade front remain well and sound and are somewhat limiting a sustainable recovery in prices.

WTI significant levels

At the moment the barrel of WTI is retreating 0.29% at $53.67 facing the next support at $53.14 (10-day SMA) followed by $51.13 (low Jan.28) and then $50.98 (55-day SMA). On the upside, a surpass of $55.18 (2019 high Jan.31) would open the door to $58.00 (high Nov.18 2018) and finally $58.89 (100-day SMA).