WTI supported near $ 53 amid record Chinese oil imports

Oil futures on NYMEX reversed a dip below $ 53 mark and managed to cling onto previous gains, as sentiment remains buoyed on reports of record high Chinese crude imports.

Oil eyes US rigs data & next week’s OPEC meeting

Currently WTI trades modestly higher at $ 53.08, reverting towards daily tops posted previously at $ 53.17. Oil prices consolidates the 2-day rally and looks to survive on the bids, worries over a sharp fall in the Chinese exports have been offset by stronger Chinese oil demand, reflected by record high crude imports in December.

However, the black gold struggles to extend the latest leg higher as uncertainty continues to loom over whether the OPEC and non-OPEC producers will abide by the OPEC output cut agreement reached last month. While an unexpected build in the US crude supplies also continue to weigh on the investors’ sentiment.

Looking ahead, oil is expected to get influenced by the US rigs count data, while US macro releases could also have major impact on the USD-sensitive commodity.

WTI technical levels

A break above $ 53.50 (round figure) could yield a test of Jan 9 high of 53.83. While a breach of support at $ 52 (key support) would expose the multi-week lows of $50.71.