Oil soars past US$103 a barrel on on geopolitical turmoil, lower U.S. stocks
The price of oil rose two per cent Thursday on lower U.S. inventories and concerns that geopolitical tensions could disrupt global supplies.
Benchmark West Texas Intermediate crude for August delivery rose $1.99 to close at US$103.19 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange. On Wednesday, the Nymex contract added $1.24 to close at $101.20.
Brent crude for September delivery, a benchmark for international oils used by many U.S. refineries, rose 72 cents to close at US$107.89 on the ICE Futures exchange in London.
A string of geopolitical events pushed prices higher by raising concern that oil supplies could be disrupted, even though no disruptions were imminent. The Obama administration announced new sanctions against Russian energy companies, including Rosneft, Russia's biggest oil producer, after the market closed on Wednesday. While analysts say it is unlikely to cause any dip in production or exports in the short term, it could prevent or delay future exploration and production.
The crash of a Malaysian Airlines passenger plane over Ukraine â€” which Ukrainian officials said was shot down â€” raised the risk of a sharper conflict between Ukraine and Russia that could lead to even tighter sanctions against Russia. And fighting in the Gaza strip intensified after a shaky ceasefire expired, yet another source of turmoil in the Middle East, the world's most important oil-producing region.
"Although oil balances will not be impacted, it gives the oil complex another reason to inject some geopolitical risk premium," wrote energy analyst Jim Ritterbusch in a research note to investors.
The jitters about potential disruptions came on the heels of a surprisingly large decline in supplies in the U.S. On Wednesday, the Energy Information Administration said U.S. crude oil inventories fell by 7.5 million barrels to 375 million barrels in the week of July 11. The fall was more than double what analysts had expected, and reversed what had been a three-week slide in prices.
In other Nymex trading, wholesale gasoline closed unchanged at US$2.882 a U.S. gallon (3.79 litres), heating oil rose 0.1 cent to close at $2.859 a gallon and natural gas fell 16.5 cents to close at $3.954 per 1,000 cubic feet.
(TSX:ECA), (TSX:IMO), (TSX:SU), (TSX:HSE), (NYSE:BP), (NYSE:COP), (NYSE:XOM), (NYSE:CVX), (TSX:CNQ), (TSX:TLM), (TSX:COS), (TSX:CVE)
Read more Business News
- Hells Angel didn't see gunsVernon / N. Okanagan
- Missing man found deadVernon / N. Okanagan
- Parents get Robo-CallsCentral Okanagan
- Surrey Mayor seeks Tory nod BC
|QHR Technologies Inc||1.25||-0.05|
|Anavex Life Sciences||0.2361||-0.0139|
|Copper Mountain Mining||2.73||+0.04|
|Sunrise Resources Ltd||0.02||-0.005|
|Mission Ready Services||0.29||-0.01|
Part 1 of 2 Photo: Thinkstock.com1. Move in with your parents or in-laws Explain that you're thinking strategically in moving back home. The quickest way to get into the housing market is to ma...
Article written by Linda Bustos Though I’d never recommend “lowest prices” as a unique selling proposition, I notice many retailers use a Price Match Guarantee or even a 110% Guara...
This week my wife wrote a blog for our charities website, I thought you may enjoy reading it here: I was planning to write about the incredible philanthropic Miss Angelina when, funnily enough, she ...