Crude oil prices moved higher on Friday and snapped an eight-session losing streak, after fairly decent monthly jobs data from the U.S. Labor Department eased concerns about growth in the world’s largest economy and the outlook for energy demand.
However, crude’s upside was not any significantly sharp as Saudi Arabia said it has fully restored its oil production following the attacks on its oil facilities in mid-September.
West Texas Intermediate Crude oil futures for November ended up $0.36, or about 0.7%, at $52.81 a barrel.
On Thursday, WTI crude oil futures for November ended down $0.19, or about 0.4%, at $52.45 a barrel, the lowest settlement in nearly two months.
For the week, crude oil futures shed about 5.5%, posting their second straight weekly loss.
According to a report from Baker Hughes, oil rig count fell for the sixth straight week, with the number of active U.S. rigs drilling for oil dropped by three to 710 this week. The total active rig count fell by five to 855, the report said.
In a speech during a plenary session at Russian Energy Week in Moscow, Saudi Arabia’s Energy Minister Prince Abdulaziz bin Salman said the kingdom’s oil production capacity now stands at 11.3 million barrels per day (mbpd).
The U.S. Labor Department’s jobs report showed weaker than expected job growth in September. However, the unemployment rate unexpectedly dropped to a nearly 50-year low.
The report said non-farm payroll employment rose by 136,000 jobs in September compared to economist estimates for an increase of about 145,000 jobs.
Meanwhile, the increases in employment in July and August were upwardly revised to 166,000 jobs and 168,000 jobs, respectively, reflecting the addition of 45,000 more jobs than previously reported.
The average monthly job growth has still slowed from 223,000 jobs per month in 2018 to 161,000 jobs per month so far in 2019.
The Labor Department also said the unemployment rate fell to 3.5% in September from 3.7% in August, dropping to its lowest level since hitting a matching rate in December of 1969.
Investors are eagerly awaiting next week’s U.S.-China trade talks for any signs of a breakthrough on a trade deal.
The material has been provided by InstaForex Company – www.instaforex.com