Oil bounces back above $100/bbl after volatile day on Wall Street

Oil prices rebounded above $100 and shares in Asia edged higher on Friday after a volatile trading day on Wall Street, as investors grapple with the disaster from Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

Brent crude, the international benchmark, was up 2.6% to $101.61 a barrel, while US mid-range West Texas crude rose 2.3% to $94.97.

Brent had soar to nearly $106 on Thursday as explosions rocked Kyiv but settled at $99.08 after US president Joe Biden revealed new sanctions against Russia has ignored energy exports.

In Asia, Hong Kong’s benchmark Hang Seng index rose 0.4% after closing the previous session down more than 3%. Japan’s Topix index also gained 0.7%, and in Australia, the S&P/ASX 200 gained 0.5%.

Oil prices rose after a volatile day on Wall Street, where the S&P 500 index fell 2.6% before closing 1.5% higher. New York traders attributed the swings to hedge funds who kept betting that stocks would fall in price when war broke out.

Hedge funds, traders said, are looking to reduce their exposure to risk in response to extreme market volatility, masking their short positions by buying the underlying stocks or funds. exchange transactions and provide a slight boost to the broader market in the process.

“It’s a short cover,” said Andy Maynard, a trader at investment bank China Renaissance. “They don’t have anything to keep buying. . . This is definitely not bottom fishing.”

The head of another brokerage warned that even after Friday’s short sale in Hong Kong, “there is still a sizable short position being taken” as the market prepares for more disruption. caused by the invasion.

In China, where officials have spoken out strong support In the wake of Russian President Vladimir Putin’s invasion and banned short-selling of individual stocks, the CSI 300 index of Shanghai and Shenzhen-listed shares rose 1.7% after ending the previous session lower. 2%.

Global investors continued to dump risky assets like stocks in favor of the heavens, with gold prices up 0.6 percent to $1,914.85 an ounce.

The US dollar steadied after posting gains on Thursday as European currencies including the euro and pound sold off, with the dollar index falling about 0.1% on Friday in level 96.99.

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