Investors will be paying close attention this week to new Congressional testimony from Fed Chair Women Janet Yellen on Wednesday about the economic outlook followed by decisions made about approving tax reform in the Senate, and production cuts during a closely watched OPEC meeting in Vienna, Austria that will likely determine the direction of crude oil during the remaining weeks of 2017 and early 2018.
Oil traders are positioning themselves ahead of the OPEC meeting on Thursday when OPEC members will decide about whether to continue oil production cuts made in 2017 that last until the end of March 2018 in coordination with non-OPEC members that have helped crude oil prices to rebound from the sharp declines seen during the early summer and the early months of 2016 which both saw Brent crude prices fall to under $50 a barrel.
Brent Crude (Jan 2018 futures) is currently $63.80 a barrel and remains near a 52 week high of $64.65 a barrel while WTI (Jan. 2018 futures) is currently trading at $58.60 a barrel, close to its 52 week high of $59.05.
Some of the other market moving information due this week includes the confirmation hearing of new incoming Fed Chair Jeremy Powell on Tuesday before the Senate Banking Committee (10:00 EST).
There will be a lot of U.S. economic data released this week, starting with New Home Sales (October) on Monday.
Consumer Confidence (Nov.) is due on Tuesday along with FHFA House Price Index (Sept) and Case Shiller (Sept.).
On Wednesday U.S. GDP is reported (Q3) in addition to the pending home sales index (Oct.), and the Fed’s Beige Book.
On Thursday weekly jobless claims is due along with Personal Income and Outlays (Oct.), and Chicago PMI (Nov.).
On Friday motor sales are reported (Nov.) besides the PMI Manufacturing Index (Nov.), ISM index (Nov.), and Construction Spending (Oct.).
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