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Talking Points:

  • Crude oil and gold prices rose after data showed slowing US wage growth
  • Easing worries about steep Fed rate hikes lifted sentiment, hurt US Dollar
  • Stock index futures hint at “risk-on” mood ahead, EIA drilling report due

Crude oil prices shot higher as February’s US labor-market statistics showed wage inflation dropped back to 2.6 percent, hinting January’s spike may have been a one-off and easing worries about a steep Fed rate hike cycle. That bolstered risk appetite, sending the WTI benchmark higher alongside the bellwether S&P 500 stock index. Gold prices also gained as the outcome weighed on the US Dollar.

Looking ahead, futures tracking key US equity indexes point to a risk-on mood at the start of the week. That might keep oil prices well-supported, although gains may throttled if the monthly EIA Drilling Productivity report shows US shale producers are ramping out operations. Gold may struggle as investors’ rosy disposition translates into higher bond yields, sapping the appeal of non-interest-bearing assets.

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


Gold prices are hovering above familiar 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 breach of range resistance at 1341.04 paves the way for a challenge of the 38.2% Fib expansion at 1352.40.

Crude Oil Price Rise May Stall on EIA Drilling Data


Crude oil prices are consolidating within a Falling Wedge chart pattern, a setup that typically carries bullish implications. A daily close above its upper boundary – now at 62.64 – exposes the February 26 high at 64.21. Alternatively, a move back below the 59.83-60.00 area (wedge floor, March 8 low) opens the door for a retest of the February 9 bottom at 58.11.

Crude Oil Price Rise May Stall on EIA Drilling Data


--- Written by Ilya Spivak, Currency Strategist for

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