Oil prices fall due to weak Chinese export data

9 December 2019 (Last Updated December 9th, 2019 11:24)

Oil prices have slipped as official data showed a decline in Chinese exports for a straight fourth month, adding worries to the market which is concerned about damage being done to global economy over the US-China trade dispute.

Oil prices have slipped as official data showed a decline in Chinese exports for a straight fourth month, adding worries to the market which is concerned about damage being done to global economy over the US-China trade dispute.

Brent futures declined 21 cents at $64.18 a barrel, while West Texas Intermediate (WTI) oil futures edged down 30 cents to $58.90 a barrel, reported Reuters. Chinese customs data highlighted a 1.1% decline in exports in November 2019 from 2018, which is a sharp reversal compared to expectations for a 1% increase in a poll by Reuters.

OANDA senior market analyst Jeffrey Halley was quoted by Reuters as saying: “China is clearly not immune to either the US trade tariffs, or the lingering slowdown in the broader global economy.”

The US and China are in the process of signing a trade deal which will end trade taxes, but negotiations have dragged on for months as they discuss over key details. According to China’s Assistant Commerce Minister Ren Hongbin, Beijing’s agreement with Washington is expected to be reached as early as possible.

Meanwhile, the seventh OPEC and non-OPEC Ministerial Meeting decided for an additional adjustment of 500tb/d to the adjustment levels, leading to total adjustments of 1.7 million barrels per day (Mbpd) which was initially 1.2Mbpd before the meeting.

Reuters cited Goldman Sachs as saying in a note: “This decision crystallises an important shift in strategy to managing short-term physical imbalances rather than trying to correct perceived long-term imbalances through open-ended commitments.”

The Ministry also noted that the OPEC and non-OPEC meeting will again be convened in Vienna on 10 June 2020.