Crude oil futures inched lower during the Asian trade session today. Prices are coming off their highest price levels in months as traders’ nerves are calming.
The world is still waiting on Iran to respond to the United States for killing their top military commander.
As of 2 am GMT, the international benchmark, Brent crude oil futures contract, was down 44 cents to trade at $68.47 a barrel.
The U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude oil futures contract was also lower. This contract shed 41 cents to trade at $62.86 a barrel.
Oil prices have been surging higher over the last two trade session. Traders are worried about supply disruptions in the Middle East after a January 3 U.S. drone strike killed Iranian General Qassem Soleimani in Iraq.
Traders are also monitoring production from the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) as they are being compliant with agreed upon pumping restrictions and quota curbs in order to reduce global supply.
OPEC countries, are averaging, 29.50 million barrels per day. This is 50K barrels lower than the number seen in November.
Oil inventory in the United States dripped last week for the fourth week in a row. Exports are increasing which is pressuring inventory levels. Production is also starting to slowdown in the U.S.
Crude Oil Traders Wait on Key Eurozone Inflation Data and US ISM Services PMI
There are some key events on the economic calendar today out of Europe and the United States.
Eurozone core and non-core consumer price indices (CPI) are on the docket today. Italy is also releasing their consumer price index. Also scheduled, out of the Eurozone, are monthly retail sales.
On the U.S. economic calendar, the Institute for Supply Management (ISM) non-manufacturing purchasing managers’ index (PMI) is on the economic docket as well as trade data and monthly factory orders.