Crude oil prices changed direction from an upward trend during the first week of 2012 to a decline during the second week of January. The speculation around the Euro Area’s economic stability may have adversely affected commodities prices. The January effect seems to have dissipated not only from the American stock market but also the oil market. During last week, WTI oil price fell by 2.82% and Brent price by 1.94%; as a result, the difference between Brent and WTI rose to $12.17/b on Friday.
Here is a short recap for the recent development of crude oil price (Brent oil and WTI), and a summary of the recent EIA oil stockpiles report for the week of January 9th to 13th:
Oil Price – Highlights
WTI (spot) decreased during last week by 2.82%; its weekly average price also decreased by 1.21% to $100.44 per barrel, compared with last week’s $101.68 per barrel. The average daily percent change of crude oil price (WTI) was -0.57%.
Europe Brent oil price also declined during the week by 1.94% and the average price fell by 1.23% compared with previous week’s average.
The difference of Brent over WTI spot prices rose during the week; its average premium was $11.29; it finished the week at $12.17. The recent rising tensions in the Middle East (mainly in Iran) may have been among the contributing factors for the recent rise of the premium of Brent over WTI.
The following charts show the development of (for the week ending on January 13th) WTI spot oil price, NYMEX Futures Prices (Short term delivery) and Europe Brent spot oil price:
The first chart shows the changes of WTI and Brent oil prices during the week: WTI and Brent oil prices have had a moderate downward trend throughout most of the week.
Crude Oil Stockpiles –Highlights:
According to the last EIA report on the U.S Petroleum market, for the week ending on January 7th, U.S. Petroleum and crude oil stockpiles sharply rose by 9.4 million barrels to reach 1,749.7 million barrels. The current stockpiles are 41.447 million barrels below oil stockpiles levels recorded during the same week in 2011.
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