WTI drops back below $110 amid profit-taking with EU split on Russia oil ban

  • WTI has eased back from APac session highs in the $113.00s to under $110 amid fresh profit-taking.
  • The EU is reportedly split over whether or not to press ahead with a Russian oil import ban.

After rising as high as the $113.00s during Asia Pacific trade as oil market participants responded to chatter about a potential EU ban on Russian oil imports and weekend news of disruptions to Saudi energy infrastructure, front-month WTI futures have eased back somewhat. Prices are now back to trading beneath $110 per barrel, down about $3.50 versus Monday’s closing highs in the upper $112.00s. That still leaves prices higher by more than $15 versus last week’s lows, though still some $20 lower versus earlier monthly highs.

Reports that EU foreign ministers are split over whether to press ahead with the Russian oil embargo likely prompted some profit-taking, with Germany reportedly still of the view that the bloc remains too dependent on Russian energy to take such a step. “The proposed ban is still some way from becoming policy because a significant number of EU nations oppose the ban… Still, the fact that the ban is being discussed at all is a significant shift” said analysts at Commonwealth Bank of Australia.

Looking ahead, geopolitical developments remain in the forefront, though traders will also be focused on the latest weekly Private API crude oil inventory data release at 2130 GMT. Oil traders continue to fret about uncertainty regarding the extent of loss of Russian supply at a time when global oil reserves are at multi-year lows.