Brent ends on a gain of 0.32% to 56.08 dollars and WTI ends on an advance of 0.49% to 53.24 dollars.
Oil prices continued to have the wind in their sails, modestly, on Wednesday as Joe Biden was sworn in as the 46th President of the United States and the horizon cleared for demand.
A barrel of North Sea Brent for March delivery was up 0.32% or 18 cents from Tuesday’s close at $ 56.08.
The US barrel of WTI for the month of February, which is the last day of trading, rose 0.49% or 26 cents to 53.24 dollars.
The prices of the two benchmark contracts had moved earlier in London to their last records since the end of February 2020 affected last Wednesday (respectively of $ 57.42 and $ 53.93 per barrel). They moderated their increase in session in New York.
“Oil confirms its momentum with WTI rebounding above $ 53. Market sentiment remains positive, investors are betting on a recovery in demand once the vaccines have defeated the virus, thus ending the lockdowns of recent months, “said Carlo Alberto De Casa, analyst at Activtrades.
Crude prices also rose in the wake of Joe Biden’s inauguration ceremony. With the arrival of the Democratic president, comes the promise of massive budgetary aid, viewed favorably by the markets.
The day before, Janet Yellen, future secretary of the US Treasury, had called for “thinking big” in budgetary support for the economy, which had been well received by investors.
“It’s a new day for America and for the crude market, the outlook under his administration is very optimistic,” said Phil Flynn of Price Futures Group.
“The contempt for the fossil fuel records and the worship on the altar of climate change will restrict American supply and drive up prices,” adds the analyst.
Mr. Biden was due to sign an executive order on Wednesday afternoon blocking the controversial Keystone XL pipeline project between Canada and the United States.
For Christopher Page of Rystad Energy, the arrival of the Biden administration will support prices for other reasons.
He forecasts an increase in demand for US oil of about 350,000 barrels per day, “because of the expected short-term economic recovery and its infrastructure plan.”
This $ 1.9 trillion stimulus project focuses on financial assistance for low-income American families, extended UI benefits and state supports.
The IEA report released Tuesday on demand for black gold also made comments rather optimistic for the strength of the recovery, although it revised its forecast slightly downward.
After the close on Wednesday, investors will have estimates of US stocks from the American Petroleum Institute (API), the federation of professionals in the petroleum industry, which are expected to decline somewhat.
The more official weekly report on US oil stocks compiled by the US Energy Information Agency (EIA) will be released on Friday.