Oil prices steadies on OPEC cuts, trade talk hopes



Oil prices were stable yesterday, supported by hopes that talks in Beijing between U.S. and Chinese officials might defuse trade disputes between the world’s biggest economies.

OPEC-led supply cuts also tightened the markets.

International Brent crude futures LCOc1 were at $57.42 per barrel at 0742 GMT, up 9 cents, or 0.2 per cent from their last close.

U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude oil futures CLc1 were at $48.56 per barrel, up 4 cents, or 0.1 per cent.

U.S. Commerce Secretary, Wilbur Ross, said on Monday that Beijing and Washington could reach a trade deal that “we can live with”.

Dozens of officials from China and the United States held talks in a bid to end a trade spat that has roiled global markets since last year.

Despite optimism around the talks in Beijing, some analysts warned that the relationship between Washington and Beijing remained on shaky grounds, and that tensions could flare up again soon.

“We remain concerned about the world’s most important bilateral relationship,” political risk consultancy Eurasia Group said in its 2019 outlook.

“The U.S. political establishment believes engagement with Beijing is no longer working, and it’s embracing an openly confrontational approach.

“(And) rising nationalist sentiment makes it unlikely that Beijing will ignore U.S. provocations,” Eurasia Group said.

Oil prices were stable on Tuesday, supported by hopes that talks in Beijing between U.S. and Chinese officials might defuse trade disputes between the world’s biggest economies.

OPEC-led supply cuts also tightened the markets.

International Brent crude futures LCOc1 were at $57.42 per barrel at 0742 GMT, up 9 cents, or 0.2 per cent from their last close.

U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude oil futures CLc1 were at $48.56 per barrel, up 4 cents, or 0.1 per cent.

U.S. Commerce Secretary, Wilbur Ross, said on Monday that Beijing and Washington could reach a trade deal that “we can live with”.

Dozens of officials from China and the United States held talks in a bid to end a trade spat that has roiled global markets since last year.

Despite optimism around the talks in Beijing, some analysts warned that the relationship between Washington and Beijing remained on shaky grounds, and that tensions could flare up again soon.

“We remain concerned about the world’s most important bilateral relationship,” political risk consultancy Eurasia Group said in its 2019 outlook.

“The U.S. political establishment believes engagement with Beijing is no longer working, and it’s embracing an openly confrontational approach.

“(And) rising nationalist sentiment makes it unlikely that Beijing will ignore U.S. provocations,” Eurasia Group said.

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