Oil prices steady; trade news remained in focus
LONDON, November 25, 2019 – US oil prices steadied on Monday in Asia as Sino-US trade talks continued to dominate markets action.
US Crude Oil WTIFutures inched up 0.2% to $57.90 by 12:35 AM ET (04:35 GMT). International Brent Oil Futures was unchanged at $62.37.
While Reuters said the signing of the phase one trade deal might slide to next year, US national security adviser Robert O’Brien said this weekend that the agreement with China is still possible by the end of the year.
In an attempt to address one of the sticking points in trade talks, China said on Sunday that it will raise penalties on violations of intellectual property rights.
The US has urged China multiple times in the past to crack down on IP theft. “This is a big step forward for potential trade negotiation if they are adopted as official policy,” said CMC Markets chief market strategist MichaelMcCarthy in a Reuters report.
Chinese President Xi Jinping and his US counterpart Donald Trump both expressed a desire to sign the deal last week, although concerns that political events in Hong Kong could overshadow trade talk progress intensified after Beijing criticized Washington and accused it of meddling in China’s internal affairs.
In other news, Reuters reported last week that OPEC is likely to extend the current pact it had with its allies to cut production by 1.2 million barrels per day till June, the news were cited as a tailwind for oil prices.