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Oil down, precious metals up, as NATO agrees to bolster defenses

By all accounts, the Manufacturing and Services industries are doing remarkably well. Which is good. There were some US data points around durable goods which came in worse than expected and this highlights that the US consumers are not very hopeful for the future, or that inflation is biting their personal wealth so much that they cannot afford or are unwilling to purchase big-ticket items in the way they had been over the last year or so.

Market Wrap

Was it the technical analysis, which for some can be a self-fulfilling prophecy, or was it the fundamentals? Crude oil futures prices fell by 2% on Thursday as sanctions-related supply concerns abated after US National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan hinted that progress had been made in the country's nuclear deal talks with Iran, another major oil exporter blacklisted by the US.

"We've made progress over the course of the last several weeks," Sullivan asserted a day prior while admitting that there are issues left to be resolved.

Or maybe a bit of both! The market took the price of Brent up to the resistance level we had been looking to get tagged, the zone was an obvious place to reach for as the 61.8 fibs, the 120.00 psychological level, and daily time frame resistance was all confluent. Do I think this is the top? No. If Russian pipes get shut down, if their Urals oil is not exported, that is 4.5 million barrels of oil every day that needs to be found, and OPEC+ member Nigeria is losing over 90% of their oil to bandits. So Western companies without military assistance are not going to want to invest more in Africa, which is already falling behind on their net quotas.

In response to the mounting tensions between Russia and the West, precious metals prices rose on Thursday, with gold rallying nearly 1% and silver rising over 2%.

Joe Biden has already met with NATO leaders and told them that he supports increased numbers of NATO troops on Europe's eastern front. Meanwhile, Washington introduced additional sanctions against Moscow. There is talk of the US helping Ukraine with anti-ship missiles after footage was released of Russia allegedly firing a barrage of cruise missiles from the land and sea. The Black Sea is also being used in the bombardment of Mariupol and the likelihood of Odesa being targeted more is high.

After the flash PMI data today the forex markets are relatively rangebound unless you are shorting the yen. In this morning’s video, I discussed the need for patience while we wait for more informed participants to make a move. The analysis would appear to be working so far. Hopefully, not many people are getting chopped up. The ActivTrades sentiment indicator still suggests there could be more downside pressure to come.

The US dollar is trading within a very tight ascending channel, and I am thinking a show of defiance by the bears at the $99 level once again could get the bulls to give up and then make them wait for a chance to get long at the daily 50 EMA once again.

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