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  • Oil drillers in the U.S. cut two oil rigs to 859.
  • WTI struggles to stage a decisive recover and looks to record losses for the week.

After the weekly report released by the General Electric Co’s Baker Hughes energy services showed that drillers in the United States cut two rigs this week to bring the total number  of active rigs to 859, the price of the barrel of West Texas Intermediate rose slightly but failed to gain traction. As of writing, the WTI was trading at $68.30, losing 1% on the day.

News of China introducing new tariffs on $60 billion worth of U.S. goods on Friday escalated fears regarding an all-out trade war and brought back the concerns of Chinese demand getting hit in the remainder of the year. Not just crude oil,  other commodities recorded losses as well. Furthermore, according to Bloomberg, China also rejected the U.S. request to cut oil imports from Iran to put some extra pressure on crude prices.

Commenting on the market’s reaction to these developments,  “it’s a jittery feel here, as long as we have Iranian sanctions uncertainty and tariff uncertainty, and it doesn’t take much to spark a significant swing one way or the other,” Jim Ritterbusch, an analyst in Galena, Illinois, told Reuters.

Technical outlook

The initial resistance aligns at $68.80 ahead of $69.50 (50-DMA) and $70 (psychological level). On the downside, supports are located at $68 (psychological level/daily low), $66.90, Aug. 2 low) and $65.80 (May 28 low).