Crude oil futures rises 0.78%

Marco Green
January 17, 2020

But the missile attacks on the Iraqi airbases did not kill anyone and US President Donald Trump stood down from escalating his fight with Iran, easing geopolitical tensions in the Middle East, which often send oil prices higher. China has cut imports of American agricultural products during the long-running trade war between Washington and Beijing, roiling the economy in the nation's farm belt.

The purchases over two years will include liquefied natural gas, crude oil, refined products and coal, the US government said Wednesday in Washington.

"Signing the deal is the easy part", said Ken Morrison, a St. Louis-based independent commodity trader. -China trade agreement, even as both sides are expected to sign an interim deal later on Wednesday.

"Given the numerous deals that have been reached and then breached in the past two years, we are also skeptical", the National Farmers Union, which advocates on behalf of nearly 200,000 American farm families, said in a statement. American oil and natural gas prices were also lower. That includes oilseeds, meat, cereals, ethanol and cotton.

China agreed to buy $52.4 billion of additional USA energy products as part of a landmark trade deal signed by the world's two top economic superpowers. "It's just big numbers thrown around".

US oil exports to China, which had been surging through July 2018, slumped as trade tensions between the two nations escalated.

While China has tapered off its imports of American crude, the Asian nation hasn't moved away from its dependence on foreign oil. China skipped crude purchases from the U.S. for six months through November, according to data from the U.S. Census Bureau.

Coal will likely be a small component of the trade accord with China, the world's largest producer of the commodity.

West Texas Intermediate crude for February delivery fell 22 cents, or 0.4%, to US$58.01 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange as of 10.14am in Singapore. United States natural gas was up 0.5 per cent after slumping 3.1 per cent on Wednesday. That agreement is expected to include provisions for China to buy up to $50 billion more in USA energy supplies.

But the outlook for farm trade is uncertain, given some tariffs are still in place.

"Without more concrete details, we are deeply concerned that all of this pain may not have been worth it", the National Farmers Union, which represents nearly 200,000 American farmers, said in a statement. "In order to fully capture the benefits of this deal, we need China to eliminate all tariffs on USA pork for at least five years".

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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