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  • WTI fails to hold on to recovery gains marked after soft inventory build.
  • Russian commitment to OPEC policies and doubts over Iran’s claims to have contained protests please buyers.
  • Hong Kong bill adds to the US-China pessimism.

With the trade/political jitters between the world’s top two economies likely challenging global energy demand, WTI stops the recent recovery below 200-day EMA while taking rounds to $57.00 during the Asian morning on Thursday.

The trade stalemate between the United States (US) and China worsened recently after President Trump said he doesn’t think “China is stepping up to the level I want in trade talks.” Also contributing to the pessimism is the Reuters’ news that the Republican leader Trump is expected to sign Hong Kong Human Rights Bill passed by the Congress.

WTI earlier benefited from the weekly inventory numbers from the Energy Information Administration (EIA). The official Crude Oil Stocks change for the week ended on November 15 rose by 1.4 million barrels to come in below the market expectation of 1.54 million barrels. Also, statement from Russian President Vladimir Putin that they will continue to work with Saudi Arabia and  the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) on output curbs to provide additional support to crude oil prices turned down the earlier speculations that the OPEC+ alliance will find it difficult for further output cuts. Further, doubts that Iran’s protests, which led to nearly 100 death cited by the Wall Street Journal (WSJ) and internet outage, continue added strength to the energy benchmark.

On the contrary, doubts over the global economy, as suggested by the German Finance Ministry report, challenged the price up-moves.

While the US Philadelphia Fed Manufacturing Survey occupies the economic calendar, expected 7.00 versus 5.6 prior, the market’s focus will be on the trade/political headlines concerning the US and China.

Technical Analysis

Unless providing a daily closing beyond 200-day Exponential Moving Average (EMA) level near $57.10, the black gold is less likely to aim at a monthly top surrounding $58.20, which in turn highlights $54.90 and $54.15 as near-term key supports.