Brent Steady As Markets Prepare For Delayed US Data
Brent crude oil remained steady above $110 as Federal employees headed back to work and investors waited for a spate of delayed US data that will paint a clearer picture of the nation's economic health.
The commodity traded at $110.32 at 6:30 GMT on Wednesday morning as most were reluctant to take new positions before the economic indicators were released.
US Congress made an eleventh hour deal to end the government shutdown and extend the country's borrowing authority on Thursday morning. However, many consider the deal to be a band aid on a broken limb as it simply postpones the battle between Democrats and Republicans. The bill will fund the federal government until January 15th and raise the debt ceiling until February 7.
CNBC reported that analysts expect Brent to trade in a narrow range between $108 and $113 until the delayed US data provides more insight to the country's economic state.
Talks between several world powers and Iran ended on a positive note, mitigating Brent's gains from the US budget resolution. Western diplomats present at the meeting said Iran seemed willing to cut down on some of its nuclear activities in order to have some of its economic sanctions lifted.
Although most expect that it will be months before sanctions on Iranian oil are lifted, oil markets will be heavily focused on the outcome of the talks.
Brent prices were also weighed down by data from the American Petroleum Institute that showed US crude stockpiles rose by 5.9 million barrels last week. The figure is more than double original estimates of a 2.2 million barrel rise.
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