Crude rises to three-week high as US supplies decline
Published 21/07/2010 | 15:56
Crude oil advanced to the highest level in three weeks in New York on falling inventories in the US, the world’s biggest oil-consuming country.
The American Petroleum Institute said yesterday that crude oil and gasoline stockpiles fell last week.
The Energy Department will probably report that supplies fell 1.2 million barrels, according to the median of 17 analysts surveyed by Bloomberg News. It would be the fourth straight inventory drop.
“If we get a fourth consecutive fall in stockpiles, you will see oil test the recent highs,” said Gene McGillian, an analyst and broker at Tradition Energy in Stamford, Connecticut.
Crude oil for September delivery advanced 32 cents, or 0.4pc, to $77.90 a barrel at 9:56am on the New York Mercantile Exchange.
Futures reached $78.57, the highest level since June 28. The August contract expired yesterday.
Brent crude oil for September settlement rose 28 cents, or 0.4pc, to $76.50 a barrel on the London-based ICE Futures Europe exchange.
US stockpiles of crude oil fell 241,000 barrels to 353.3 million last week, according to the American Petroleum Institute.
Petrolium supplies dropped 412,000 barrels to 221.4 million, the report showed.
The Energy Department is scheduled to release its report at 10:30am today in Washington.
Prices also gained as the National Hurricane Center said a weather system over Puerto Rico and the Dominican Republic has a 60pc chance of becoming the second named tropical cyclone of the Atlantic hurricane season. A storm would threaten production platforms and ports in the Gulf of Mexico.
The Gulf accounts for about 31pc of US oil output and 10pc of its natural-gas production and is home to seven of the 10 busiest ports, according to the Energy Department.
States along the Gulf are home to 43pc of operable US refining capacity.