On Wednesday, Brent edged slightly lower whereas WTI lost more than 2 percent. Hence, a spread between the two benchmarks widened to more than 20 USD per barrel (USD/bbl).
The main reason for further divergence between benchmark prices was probably bearish signal sent by the U.S. Department of Energy which in its regular weekly report said that oil inventories unexpectedly rose by 2.296 million barrels, mainly due to a release of oil from reserves that had been announced by the EIA in June. Worse than expected durable orders also weighed on the sentiment as well as ongoing negotiations on the U.S. debt ceiling.
Worse U.S. macrofigures hand in hand with a lack of agreement between U.S. politicians regarding the debt ceiling weighed on global risk appetite on Wednesday. This slightly overshadowed ongoing strike in the world’s top copper mine Escondida. Yesterday, the mine stopped sales of copper concentrate as the negotiations between workers and management failed once again.
After hitting yet another all-time high at 1628 USD per troy ounce (USD/toz) level, the price of gold dipped below 1620 USD/toz in the afternoon.