Oil stabilises, stocks rise on Macron confidence

Oil prices have been on a roller coaster ride from oversupply worries, strong opinion poll numbers for French centrist Macron boosted share prices.

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Oil stabilises, stocks rise on Macron confidence

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Oil prices have been on a roller coaster ride dropping almost five percent on Thursday and back up as much as two percent on Friday.

That followed assurances from Saudi Arabia that OPEC and non-OPEC countries are close to agreeing a deal to continue their production cuts for a further six months.

The problem is there is still a glut of crude with US shale oil drillers pumping more. US output is up more than 10 percent since the middle of last year.

European share indexes all enjoyed healthy gains on Friday.

Paris finished Friday’s session up 1.12 percent, with opinion polls showing centrist candidate Emmanuel Macro with a commanding lead over the far right’s Marine Le Pen going into Sunday’s French election.

Analyst Robert Halver with Baader Bank said: “The opinion polls definitely have not reflected reality in recent times and last year. But in the case of France, the belief among stock exchange traders here is very clear – Mr Macron will win the election. We can’t exclude the risk that Madam Le Pen will make it, but the likelihood clearly is that it will be Macron, and the stock exchange is happy about that!”

So despite the populist shock of the Brexit vote and Donald Trump’s election in the United States financial markets were operating on the basis that an upset is highly unlikely, with Macron the most market friendly candidate.

Le Pen has campaigned on pulling France out of the single European currency and the polls’ predictions meant the euro was trading strongly, touching a six-month high of almost $1.10.