by Joseph Rokop
U.S. oil prices settled higher for the fifth straight session on Friday amid optimism that OPEC-led cuts will slowly drain the world’s oil supply, thus, rebalancing the crude fundamental suite.
The WTI February contract settled at 64.30 on Friday, up 50 cents on the day. Due to MLK Day on Monday, the Nymex was closed here in the states, but in electronic trading, crude finished 51 cents higher to close the day at 64.81.
The Brent March contract settled at 69.87 on Friday, up 61 cents on the day. Like the WTI, Brent also rallied in electronic trading Monday, topping 70 dollars per barrel with an intraday high of 70.37. This recent rally marks the first time the front month Brent contract has been above the 70 dollar mark since December 2014.
The Brent/WTI front month arb has narrowed since the start of the year, as traders shrug off higher U.S. production numbers. The arb now sits at -5.55.
As we turn the corner into the remainder of the week, here’s an inside look: