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Talking Points:

  • Crude oil prices fall as US output hits highest since at least 1983
  • Gold prices retreat as White House hints at tariff hike exemptions
  • All eyes on how trade partners will respond to US protectionism

Crude oil prices were unable to capitalize on a recovery in risk appetite, plunging after weekly EIA inventory flow data showed stockpiles added 2.41 million barrels last week. That topped estimates calling for a 2.19 barrel increase (though falling short of the 5.66 million jump predicted by API). The same report showed US production rose to 10.369 million barrels per day, the highest since at least 1983.

Gold prices did prove responsive to the markets’ brighter mood however. The metal pulled back as the White House hinted that some key trading partners may be exempt from a coming hike in steel and aluminum tariffs. That bid up front-end bond yields as capital left the haven of Treasury bonds and the priced-in Fed rate hike path steepened, undermining the appeal of non-interest-bearing assets.

Looking ahead, news-flow from Washington DC is likely to remain in the spotlight. S&P 500 futures are trading ever so slightly higher, hinting the markets are still entertaining the possibility that whatever trade barriers the US ultimately enacts will be more symbolic than truly biting. Such hopes may quickly fade if strong countervailing actions from trade partners like the EU and China warn of deeper conflict ahead.

See our free guide to learn what are the long-term forces driving crude oil prices!


Gold prices struggled to make good on a break of near-term trend resistance, dropping back to support in the 1312.36-16.50 area (range floor, 38.2% Fib retracement). A daily close below that exposes the 50% level at 1301.19. Alternatively, a move above the 38.2% Fib expansion at 1352.40 opens the door for a challenge of the 1366.06-67.67 zone (January 25 high, 50% retracement).

Crude Oil Price Drop May Deepen as Trump Tariffs Force Retort


Crude oil prices slumped back to support at 60.96, the 38.2% Fibonacci expansion. A daily close below that targets the 50% level at 59.95. Alternatively, a push through chart inflection point resistance at 62.62 clears the way for a retest of the February 26 high at 64.21.

Crude Oil Price Drop May Deepen as Trump Tariffs Force Retort


--- Written by Ilya Spivak, Currency Strategist for

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