Overbought conditions continued to pressure September crude oil futures last week. Prices seemed poised to finish the week sharply lower as speculators pared positions while booking profits after a spectacular rally. The current developing move is expected to be corrective in nature which will allow the market to reach more favorable price levels for speculators. This may lead to a new higher bottom and another attempted breakout to the upside.
After a steep stockpile draw down, political unrest in Egypt and a strengthening economy drove prices up more than 9% in July, traders are taking a little breather as speculators are beginning to inject value into the equation. The almost perfect storm of fundamental indictors is also beginning to erode as conditions in Egypt have improved enough to lessen the chance of an impact on supply. In the meantime, traders are also beginning to realize that U.S. supply issues are likely to improve.
At issue is the weakening economy in China and the Fed’s decision to implement the tapering of its monetary stimulus program. With China continuing to show signs of weaker growth, analysts are adjusting their estimates for a possible drop in demand. Improvements in the U.K. and Euro Zone economies are also being factored in however.
The biggest issue facing traders over the near-term is whether the U.S. economy will improve enough to warrant a change in Fed policy sooner-than-expected. Initially, investors believed the…