US Crude Oil eases from five-month highs as weaker US consumer confidence raises demand concerns, US producers shut 84% of Gulf’s offshore output

Having settled at a five-month high on Tuesday, futures on US West Texas Intermediate Crude Oil eased on Wednesday as disappointing US consumer confidence data added to demand concerns, limiting price gains.

Both WTI Crude and Brent Oil futures rose more than 2% on Tuesday, as US producers were making preparations before Hurricane Laura hits the Gulf of Mexico. 310 offshore facilities were evacuated and 1.56 million barrels per day of oil output – shut down, or about 84% of the Gulf’s offshore production.

“The hurricane impact is short-term bullish, but that could be short-lived if the damage to the Texas and Louisiana coasts cripples demand for an extended time,” Edward Moya, senior market analyst at OANDA, said.

Additional support for oil markets came after an industry report by the American Petroleum Institute showed US crude oil stocks had decreased more than anticipated during the week ended August 21st, by 4.5 million barrels.

The official government report on crude oil inventories by the Energy Information Administration (EIA) is due out at 14:30 GMT today.

Oil markets also appreciated US and China top trade negotiators’ commitment to a “Phase One” deal, which the two countries had reached in January.

However, fuel demand concerns re-emerged after a report by the Conference Board showed on Tuesday that US consumer confidence had decreased to its lowest level since May 2014 in August.

As of 9:06 GMT on Wednesday WTI Crude Oil Futures were edging down 0.14% to trade at $43.31 per barrel, while moving within a daily range of $43.18-$43.45. Yesterday the black liquid climbed as high as $43.55 per barrel, or its strongest price level since March 6th. WTI Crude Futures have risen 6.98% so far in August, after three straight months of gains.

Brent Oil Futures were edging down 0.24% on the day to trade at $45.90 per barrel, while moving within a daily range of $45.80-$46.08. Brent Oil Futures have risen 5.11% so far in August, after four straight months of gains.

Daily Pivot Levels (traditional method of calculation) – WTI Crude Oil Futures

Central Pivot – $43.10
R1 – $43.82
R2 – $44.28
R3 – $45.00
R4 – $45.73

S1 – $42.64
S2 – $41.92
S3 – $41.46
S4 – $41.01

Daily Pivot Levels (traditional method of calculation) – Brent Oil Futures

Central Pivot – $45.71
R1 – $46.33
R2 – $46.64
R3 – $47.26
R4 – $47.87

S1 – $45.40
S2 – $44.78
S3 – $44.47
S4 – $44.15

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