Oil prices slumping 3% on Trump’s comments
HOUSTON, February 26, 2019 – Oil prices continue to slide after slumping 3% in the previous session as U.S. President Donald Trump tweeted that oil prices were too high and the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) should work on bringing them lower.
“Oil prices getting too high. OPEC, please relax and take it easy. World cannot take a price hike – fragile!” said Trump.
Fear of short supply from US sanctions on Iranian oil exports and production cuts by OPEC and Russia drove WTI to nearly $77 a barrel and Brent above $86 last year.
In the past, Trump has said oil should not sell for more than $40 a barrel and should ideally trade at $25.
His comments contradicted with Goldman Sachs’ (NYSE:GS), which forecasted Brent to peak around $67.50 a barrel in the second quarter, citing technical support and a number of other bullish factors, including production cuts by the OPEC+ alliance.
In December, OPEC and a group of 10 producers outside the cartel, led by Russia, agreed to collectively cut production by a total of 1.2 million barrels per day (bpd) during the first six months of 2019.
Top exporter and OPEC’s de-facto leader Saudi Arabia recently pledged to cut even more production than the deal called for.
U.S. Crude Oil WTI Futures last traded at $55.16 by 11:02 PM ET (04:02 GMT), down 0.6%. International Brent Oil Futures traded 0.3% lower to $64.71.
On Monday, Trump announced that he is delaying a hike in tariffs on Chinese goods. The news boosted Asian equities but failed to lift the oil market as the tweet was largely overshadowed by Trump’s comment on oil prices.