Oil has been one of the standout trades in 2017 and so far in 2018 it has looked positive. One of the reasons behind that has been the constant drawdown's in inventory in the US which has helped push up prices further. Today's reading was of course a mixed signal with a strong drawdown of -6.86M barrels (-3.15M exp).However, the bears managed to take hold and push oil prices lower. The reason behind this of course has been gasoline inventories which continue to show build ups in surplus, even as the US gets a polar blast recently. Oil traders are continuing to look for this number to drop further to showcase that there is still plenty of demand there for refined oil products, despite the drawdown's in oil inventory. So for now, while OPEC's message is clear and it has worked, the US does need to see some drawdown's in refined products in order to help propel oil prices higher.
On the charts though the bulls are still very much in control as of late. The bearish candle we saw the other day at resistance at 64.49 has so far been a warning sign that there are bears still in this market. The next level above this is 65.94 which seems very much in reach for traders out there. In the even the bears do continue to apply pressure I would anticipate targeting of 62.12 and 59.08, with levels below this likely to be a hard ask with the bullish trend line in play. I would also watch out for the 20 day moving average which is looking like it may add some weak support if the market is feeling bullish.
The S&P 500 has had a tough day today when it came to markets as US figures were not as hoped. While initial jobless claims were positive at 220K (249K exp), the US Philadelphia business outlook index dropped to 22.2 (25 exp), which implies that businesses are not that positive about the outlook of things in 2018. Equity markets are also digesting the current state of affairs when it comes to the tax changes and some firms will see a hit to their books going forward.
From the technical side of things it has got a little more interesting, if you look at the H1 chart we can clearly see that 2809 has suddenly become a nice bit of resistance, which is stopping markets from climbing higher to 2825. This could be for a number of factors but the bulls are still in there to push higher, and I would expect to see another crack tomorrow if economic figures are positive. If the market does have a repeat of bearish pressure then 2800 will be the mark to beat, but also a tough one given the history around 100 hundred markets for the S&P. Below this is 2775, but it would take some major moves to push below that before the weekend markets close out.
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