U.S. oil prices snapped a five-day losing streak on Tuesday, as market players awaited key U.S. weekly supply data to gauge the strength of oil demand from the world’s largest consumer.
The American Petroleum Institute will release its inventories report later in the day, while Wednesday’s government report could show crude stockpiles rose by 2.2 million barrels in the week ended January 3.
On the New York Mercantile Exchange, West Texas Intermediate crude for delivery in February traded at USD93.69 a barrel during U.S. morning trade, up 0.3%. New York-traded oil futures held in a tight range between USD93.36 a barrel and USD94.16 a barrel.
The February contract tumbled to USD93.20 a barrel on Monday, the lowest since December 2, before trimming losses to end at USD93.43 a barrel, down 0.56%. Nymex oil futures were likely to find support at USD93.20 a barrel, the previous session’s low and resistance at USD94.59 a barrel, the high from January 6.
The Commerce Department said in a report earlier that the U.S. trade deficit narrowed to a four-year low of USD34.25 billion in November from a deficit of USD39.33 billion in October, as exports to China rose to an all-time high.
The data showed that U.S. exports totaled USD194.86 billion, while imports came in at USD229.11 billion.
Investors were turning their attention to Wednesday’s minutes of the Federal Reserve’s December meeting and Friday’s U.S. jobs report for December for further indications on the possible timing of reductions in Fed stimulus.
Elsewhere, on the ICE Futures Exchange in London, Brent oil futures for February delivery inched up 0.3% to trade at USD107.08 a barrel, while the spread between the Brent and U.S. crude contracts stood at USD13.39 a barrel.
London-traded Brent prices were underpinned amid ongoing concerns over a disruption to supplies from Libya.
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