Weekly outlook for Crude oil, Natural gas and Gold 24-28 January

Here is a weekly outlook for the week of January 24th to 28th showing the news items and reports that will be published this coming week mainly related to the US, Australia, Japan and EURO economies.

This forecast shows how prices of major commodities such as crude oil price could be affected from these reports which include the following (all times GMT):

  1. Monday 24th of January tentative (postponed indefinitely) – Publishing the US Treasury Currency Report by the Department of Treasury: This report which is published twice a year provides information and analysis such as economic policies and economic conditions, on the US and major countries. Last time the report (July 2010) showed that the US is still on a high unemployment rate of 9.5%, however it did show an economic growth of an average 3.5% per quarter (annual basis), which was higher then the weighted-average of 2.4% of the other G7 countries. This report could provide insight into the economic growth and stability of major countries and thus inform us how their condition could affect commodities prices. (For the previous report check in this link);
  2. Wednesday 26th of January 15.30PM – EIA report about Crude oil inventories: The EIA (Energy Information Administration) will issue its weekly report on the US crude oil & petroleum related products (such as gasoline and propane), inventories and consumption of the passing week. These data show the main changes in demand (consumption and storage) and supply (production) for crude oil in the U.S. and how these changes might affect crude oil price. Last week’s report showed a rise of 0.1% in crude oil stocks, an increase of nearly 2.3 million barrels of crude oil. This rise was mainly due to the increase in Stocks of Total Gasoline, which inclined by 2% a 4.4 million barrels rise – reaching 227.6 million barrels; this rise in stocks is probably relate to the rise in imports of crude oil and increase in energy demand due to the cold weather (see here my previous review on crude oil stocks);
  3. Wednesday 26th of January 23.30PM – MI Leading index: This monthly report, issued, by the Melbourne Institute, shows the changes in the economic activities in Australia and the expectations for the near future economic growth. According the report, during October the annual growth rate was 4.1%, which is 3.3% above the long term trend. Since Australia is among the leading non-OPEC exporters of energy commodities such as coal and crude oil, its economic growth could explain changes in crude oil markets and crude oil price;
  4. Wednesday 26th of January 23.50PM – Report of Japanese Trade balance (for December): The Japanese trade balance for the month of November decrease of 150 billion YEN compare to October – a decrease of 26%, reaching 425 billion Yen (seasonally adjusted figures). This decrease is mainly due to the rise in imports by 5.1%, compare to a mere 1.7% increase in exports. Japan is among the leading importing countries of commodities, such as crude oil and gold, and its trade balance could provide insight on Japan’s changes in demand for commodities, among other imports, and its effect on commodities prices;
  5. Thursday 27th of January 13.30PM – Department of Labor report about US unemployment claims: The weekly report presents the unadjusted and seasonally adjusted data of last week’s unemployment claims. For the week ending on Jan 15th, the report showed a decrease in initial claims of 37,000, settling on 404,000 claims; the insured unemployment rate remain unchanged at a 3.1% rate for the week ending on Jan 8th; furthermore, the number of insured unemployment for the week of Jan 8th was 3.861 million, a decrease of 26,000 compare to the previous week. This is one of the indicators for the US economy’s condition. This indicator could provide a signal for investors to reconsider investing in the US; consequentially, this might increase the value of the US dollar compare to major currencies and thus reduce the appeal of commodities such as gold and crude oil as an investment which could decrease their prices.
  6. Thursday 27th of January 15.30PM – EIA report about Natural gas storage: The EIA will also issue its weekly report on the main changes in natural gas storage and consumption in the US. The EIA report showed a decline in domestic consumption and prices compare to the previous week, while The Underground Natural Gas Storage decreased by 8.2% compare to the previous week, reaching 2,716 (Billion Cubic Feet) for all lower 48 states (see here my previous review on last week’s figures update).;
  7. Friday 28th of January 9.00AM – Monetary developments in the euro area: This monthly report shows the changes in M3, M1 and loans to private sector in the Euro area. This upcoming report will refer to the month of December. In the last report pertaining November presented an annual growth rate of 1.9% for M3, a rise compares to 0.9% annual rate in October. On the other hand, the annual growth rate of loans to private sector declined from 1.5% in October to 1.3% in November. These data show a decline in economic activity along with a small potential rise in the inflation in the Euro Area that could influence investors’ perspective on investing in the EURO zone and the economic activity in Europe and consequentially its potential changes in demand/supply for commodities (see here the last report);

For further reading (in this site):