It was an active night for global markets, including a terror attack in Iran, the takeover of Banco Popular in Spain--not to mention the American Petroleum Institute Report that showed a big drop in crude supply but big increases in gasoline and distillates.
China telecom equipment maker ZTE Corp has agreed to pay more than $800 million to settle with U.S. authorities over allegations it violated U.S. laws restricting the sale of American-made technology to Iran, according to a person familiar with the matter.
I told you a week ago the markets were at the 618 day window from the May 2015 high in the SPX and it was also the 360 day high from the August 2015 low for whoever bottomed there which also turned out to be the NDX and Dow. If markets were in a sour mood, people seemed to be upset about a rumor circulating the tax cut wouldn’t come until 2018. Markets do not respond to travel bans even if I suspend the socionomic discussion for a minute.
Even as the U.S. oil rig count rose by 17 to 583 rigs this week and is the highest since October 2015, the big money knows it will take time for U.S. producers to erase the cuts that OPEC and non-OPEC players like Russia have already made. Rigs in the Permian basin are hot but in other formations we may have to see a higher price for oil to reignite the investment appetite.
The Trump Administration is acting swiftly and it is widely believed the U.S. will be announcing new sanctions on Iran because of a ballistic missile launch that was in violation of the agreement made by the Obama administration.
Crude oil prices are showing signs of breaking out to the upside as U.S. oil production falls for the second month in a row despite the following: expectations for an increase, OPEC record compliance to oil production cuts and because of a harder line on Iran by the Trump Administration.
Crude oil prices are trying to figure out the potential risk to the market because of the fallout from President Donald Trump’s travel ban and another rise in the U.S. oil rig count. This comes as the trade puts on it biggest net long oil position in history as OPEC production cuts are exceeding market expectations.
It may be the year of the Fire Rooster on the Chinese calendar, but for China and the rest of the Asian block, it is going to be the year or decade of crude oil. Oil prices hit a three-week high as the market focused on rising oil demand expectations and dwindling global oil inventories. While U.S. oil demand slipped a bit for seasonal reasons, a report that India's oil demand will soar gave the bulls some more reasons to be bullish.