Crude Oil Settles Lower

Crude Oil Settles Lower
Both the WTI and Brent crude oil prices ended the day lower.

The December West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude oil futures price declined 89 cents Tuesday to settle at $62.21 a barrel. The WTI peaked at $63.32 and bottomed out at $61.31 during trading. Also falling was the January Brent, which lost $1.04 to settle at $72.13 a barrel.

Crude prices traded lower a day after the U.S. Department of State announced that, despite the Trump administration’s re-imposition of economic sanctions on Iran, eight countries would still be able to continue importing Iranian crude oil temporarily. For some, the move helped to foster expectations that bearish sentiment will continue in the global oil market.

“In our view, higher oil prices reflect a variety of supply side and geopolitical uncertainties that have attracted speculative buyers into the market,” London-based business intelligence firm CRU observed in a written statement distributed to news media on Tuesday. “It already seems that spectator interest if fading, and we are unsure now how much lower the price can fall.”

Others, however, anticipate another uptick in crude prices. As Bloomberg reported earlier Tuesday, a leading commodities analyst with Citi predicted that a fourth-quarter uptick is “‘realistic.’”

Posting a very slight increase of less than a penny was December reformulated gasoline (RBOB), which settled Tuesday at $1.69 a barrel. RBOB traded within a range from $1.68 to $1.70.

On Monday, the December Henry Hub natural gas futures price rose by nearly 9 percent. The front-month natural gas contract erased a bit of that gain Tuesday, losing one cent to settle at $3.555. Compared to last Friday’s closing price, Tuesday’s settlement is still up 8.4 percent.


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