Energy Prices Sinking Mildly

Energy prices are sinking mildly this morning on news that the White House feels no pressure to get a deal done with China before the 2020 elections. While this could just be further posturing or a slightly less subtle bid for reelection next year, the headline nevertheless has energy futures, and likewise equity indices, down about 1% so far this morning.

Oil futures looking to open today in the negative represents a reversal of overnight trading action which had both American and European benchmarks gaining around .8%. Speculation that OPEC+ (Russia) was looking announce deeper supply cuts during its conference later this week had some buyers showing up overnight, only to wane as the morning progressed. It seems increasingly obvious that the latest round of supply talks has less to do with the health of the global oil market and more to do with the cartel’s most powerful member’s upcoming IPO, which isn’t looking too bright for the Kingdom.

The CFTC published their Commitment of Traders report yesterday on positions held by different classes of traders as of last Tuesday. Managed money added length to their net positions across the big three energy benchmarks, notably setting a new seasonal high for net length in RBOB futures. We will likely see this move reverse as of next week’s report as a knee-jerk reaction to Black Friday’s heavy sell-off.

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