LIVE CRUDE OIL UPDATE ::
Oil is poised for the biggest weekly decline since May as the turmoil in U.S. equities spur investors to shun risk assets at a time when American crude inventories are rising.
Futures in New York were little changed, heading for a weekly drop of over 4 percent. The S&P 500 Index of equities is set for the worst week in more than six months on concerns over rising interest rates and the U.S.-China trade war. Everything from crude to zinc was hit by the sell-off, while gold — a safe-haven — surged the most in more than two years. Meanwhile, American crude stockpiles increased more than forecast, rising for a third week.
“For oil, it’s important to look at the fundamental side because the recent decline is due to the risk-off sentiment across markets,” Min Byungkyu, a Seoul-based global market strategist at Yuanta Securities Co., said by phone. “Uncertainties still remain over output disruptions in Iran, and a supply shortage is looming in the market, so once the negative sentiment eases, oil will recover before equities.”
Oil has retreated almost 7 percent after reaching a four-year high earlier this month. Still, with impending U.S. sanctions on Iran set to cut the OPEC producer’s oil exports, traders continue to worry about whether the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries will be able to offset potential production losses.