Oil is stable as Gaza ceasefire negotiations progress

Oil is stable as Gaza ceasefire negotiations progress

Oil prices barely changed on Friday, withWith the global benchmark Brent hovering above US$85 per barrel, as the possibility of a ceasefire in Gaza gained momentum.

Brent crude oil futures LCOc1 were down 2 cents at $85.76 a barrel by 1017 GMT. U.S. crude futures CLc1 rose 1 cent to $81.08 a barrel.

US Secretary of State Antony Blinken stated on Thursday that he believed that Talks in Qatar could lead to a ceasefire agreement in Gaza between Israel and Hamas.

Blinken met in Cairo with Arab foreign ministers and Egyptian President Abdel Fattah El-Sisi, while negotiators in Qatar focused on a truce of about six weeks.

Meanwhile, Russia launched the largest missile and drone attack against Ukrainian energy infrastructure of the war to date on Friday, hitting the country's largest dam and causing blackouts in several regions, kyiv reported.

In recent weeks, Ukraine has planned a series of attacks against Russian energy infrastructure. Apparently, The United States has urged kyiv to stop attacks on facilities, warning that they risk provoking retaliation and driving up oil prices.

Consulting firm FGE said preliminary weekly data for the first half of March that showed onshore crude oil stocks and the main products in the main oil centers worldwide fell by almost 12 million barrels, compared to the 2015 to 2019 average withdrawal of 6 million barrels, could be bullish for oil.

Meanwhile, the US dollar strengthened after the Swiss National Bank's surprise interest rate cut reinforced global risk sentiment. A stronger dollar makes oil more expensive for investors with other currencies, reducing demand.