Oil futures lost ground Wednesday as investors awaited a double dose of U.S. data on petroleum supplies.
West Texas Intermediate crude
for December delivery
fell 44 cents, or 0.6%, to $77.82 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange.
January Brent crude
the global benchmark, declined 34 cents, or 0.4%, to $82.13 a barrel on ICE Futures Europe.
The Energy Information Administration will release two weeks worth of data on U.S. crude and product inventories after last week’s report was delayed due to a planned systems upgrade.
The data could provide a spark for crude-oil gains against a broadly positive backdrop for markets after a huge Tuesday rally for the stock market following a subdued October consumer price index reading, analysts said.
“Based on the risk-on tone in equities so far in November largely thanks to peak policy rates being priced in and firming soft landing hopes, risks in the oil market are skewed to the upside into the end of the week pending good consumer demand readings for refined products in the EIA data today,” analysts at Sevens Report Research wrote in a note.
“The headlines and production data in the EIA will be important too, however, specifically implied consumer gasoline demand metrics will be critical in easing worries that demand is faltering and energy markets are poised to roll over here,” they said.
Last week, the American Petroleum Institute, an industry trade group reported an 11.9 million barrel jump in crude supplies for the week ending Nov. 3, surprising markets and sending prices lower. The API on Wednesday reported a 1.3 million barrel rise in inventories last week, according to a source citing the data.
On average, analysts polled by S&P Global Commodity Insights forecast a climb of 4.5 million barrels in U.S. commercial crude supplies for the two weeks ending Nov. 10. They also forecast two-week inventory declines of 1.3 million barrels for gasoline and 2.7 million barrels for distillate supplies.