Energy Commodities Price Watch: WTI Trims Weekly Gain after Jobs Report

on Aug 2, 2013
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iNVEZZ.com, Friday, August 2nd: West Texas Intermediate (WTI) declined on Friday following the US non-farm payrolls report, while staying on track for a weekly gain of more than one percent. The Brent oil price also fell but losses were limited due to Middle East supply concerns. The natural gas price declined and is on track for a weekly drop following a government report pointing to a bigger-than-average rise in stockpiles.

**US Jobs Report Weighs on WTI Price**
WTI futures for September delivery shed 79 cents to $107.10 a barrel on the NYMEX before trading at $107.21 as of 13:41 BST. Despite today’s decline, the US benchmark is on track for a 1.9 percent advance this week. The WTI price fell following the release of the US jobs report which pointed to a 162,000 increase in payrolls in July, falling short of analyst expectations.

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“Disappointing jobs numbers” may trigger “a sharp fall” in the oil price, noted Thina Saltvedt, an analyst at Nordea Bank AG ahead of the release of the report, as quoted by Bloomberg. “There’s a high level of speculative money in the oil market and so if sentiment turns we could see a big turn in prices.”

**Brent Price Gives up Gains**
Brent futures for September delivery fell 0.8 percent to $108.63 a barrel on the ICE Futures Europe exchange. The contract remains on track for an advance this week, following two weeks of declines.
“It’s put in a good run this week, but the steam has come out of the rally and traders are waiting for something extra to take it higher,” pointed out Michael Hewson at CMC Markets, as quoted by Reuters.

Concerns over supply disruptions in Iraq and Libya provided support to the European benchmark and prevented bigger losses.
**Natural Gas Price Little Changed**
Natural gas futures for September delivery were little changed on Friday, trading at $3.38 per million British thermal units on the NYMEX as of 14:24 BST. Natural gas futures are headed for a second consecutive weekly loss. Yesterday, the US Energy Information Administration (EIA) reported that total domestic inventories gained 59 billion cubic feet last week, surpassing the five-year average rise of 47 billion cubic feet.

!m[Brent Price Declines but Stays on Track for Advance This Week](/uploads/story/4551/thumbs/pic1_inline.jpg)
“I think the market continues to grind lower,” noted Gene McGillian, an analyst and broker at Tradition Energy, as quoted by Bloomberg. “The break below $3.50 suggests that the market is hunting for the bottom.”
The natural gas price has also been under pressure with forecasts suggesting mild weather in the US this month, which is expected to reduce fuel demand from power plants with fewer people using air-conditioning than during hotter summers.
“We’re on track for a mild August,” pointed out Kent Bayazitoglu, an analyst at Gelber & Associates Corp, as quoted by Bloomberg. “The summer has not panned out in terms of cooling demand.”

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Energy Commodities Price Watch: Supply Risks Prop up WTI Rise in First-Half Profit Lifts Centrica’s Share Price

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