Crude oil prices remain unstable following ship attack
The price of crude oil remained choppy in the Asian session after the gains made yesterday. The gains happened after two ships carrying crude oil were attacked at the Gulf of Oman yesterday. In a statement, the US Secretary of state said that Iran was responsible for the attacks. Iran denied the allegations. The country’s leaders also rejected requests by Japan’s Shinzo Abe to go to the negotiation table with the United States. These attacks, which have increased recently, came after Donald Trump abandoned the Iran nuclear deal and rejected extending the waivers of countries that could import oil from Iran.
The US dollar strengthened slightly against major currencies as investors waited for retail sales data from the country. The data, which will be released at 1300 GMT, is expected to show that core retail sales increased by 0.5%. This was higher than the expected 0.1%. The headline retail sales data is expected to show an increase of 0.7%, which will be higher than the contraction of -0.2%. The retail control for May is expected to be at 0.4%, which will be lower than the previous 1.1%. The US will also release other data like manufacturing production, business inventories, and business expectations.
China will also be in the spotlight today. The country is expected to release the industrial production, retail sales, unemployment rate and fixed asset investment. The industrial production is expected to have grown by 5.4%, which will be unchanged from the previous month. Similarly, the fixed asset investment and unemployment rate are expected to remain unchanged at 6.1% and 5.0%. Retail sales are expected to grow by 8.0%, which is higher than the previous 7.2%.
The EUR/USD pair declined in overnight trading as traders waited for US retail sales. The pair is trading at 1.1270, which is the lowest level since Monday this week. On the hourly chart, the pair is currently along the 7-day and 14-day moving averages. It is also slightly above the 61.8% Fibonacci Retracement level while the RSI is at 34. The pair will likely continue to move lower to test the 61.8% Fibonacci level of 1.1256.
The price of crude oil was choppy in the Asian session as investors continued to focus on the Middle East. The price of Brent rose slightly to $61.30 a barrel. On the hourly chart below, the price is slightly above the 14-day moving averages while the accumulation/distribution indicator continued to decline. The money-flow index too continued to decline and reached a low of 32. At this stage, the pair will likely continue moving higher as tensions increase and as OPEC nears a deal on more supply cuts.
The USD/JPY pair was relatively unchanged as traders waited for US retail sales data and more data from China. This week, the pair reached an important low of 107.80 and then moved higher. It is now trading at 108.32. On the chart below, this price is slightly below the 14-day and 28-day moving averages. The RSI has remained at the 50s level. With the pair consolidating, it’s possible that it could move in either direction.