Crude oil prices continued to cling to broad-based sentiment trends, with the WTI benchmark echoing a tepid recovery in the bellwether S&P 500[4] stock index. Markets began the day in risk-off mode but shares bottomed and launched a recovery in late Wall Street trade after the session’s offering of corporate earnings releases was exhausted. The move seemed corrective after the drop played out over the preceding four days.

An unexpected build reported in EIA inventory flow data was shrugged off, perhaps because a disappointing outcome was telegraphed in a private-sector estimate form API published on Tuesday[5]. The official data set showed stockpiles added 2.17 million barrels last week, clashing with consensus forecasts calling for a 1.27 million barrel drawdown.

Gold prices turned back downward as further steepening of the US yield curve signaled swelling US rate hike bets, driving the US Dollar higher. Not surprisingly, that undermined the appeal of non-interest-bearing and anti-fiat assets epitomized by the yellow metal. The spread between yields on 10- and 2-year Treasury bonds hit a one-month high while the greenback touched highs unseen in six weeks.


Looking ahead, a monetary policy announcement form the European Central Bank is in focus. Its QE asset-purchase program has been a key source of support for risky assets in recent years, taking over from the Fed as it began

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