After a strong rally last week fuelled by fears over fighting in Iraq, prices for benchmark U.S. crude took a breather Monday, finishing down 1 cent to $106.90 a barrel. But the crisis in Iraq is continuing to push Brent up, with the contract for August delivery gaining 48 cents to $112.94 a barrel, Reuters reports.
The price of oil rose above $107 Monday as violence worsened in Iraq with reports of a massacre by Islamic militants, raising fears of widening instability in the country, a key energy producer.
The northern town of Tal Afar became the latest to fall to the militants, who have already captured a vast swath of territory including Iraq's second-largest city, Mosul. The militants, who on Sunday posted graphic photos of truckloads of Iraqi soldiers that they apparently captured and killed, vow to march on Baghdad.
After rising 4.1 percent last week, benchmark U.S. crude for July delivery rose 36 cents to $107.27 — the highest in nine months — in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. Brent crude, a benchmark for international oils, gained 63 cents to $113.09 a barrel in London.
Oil rose above $107 a barrel Friday as Iraq's widening insurgency raised the risk that plans to expand oil output from the No. 2 OPEC producer could be derailed.
Oil prices have risen to 10-month highs after an al-Qaida-inspired group vowed to march on Baghdad after capturing two key Iraqi cities this week, including Mosul, which is in an area that is a key gateway for the country's crude.
After rising as high as $107.68, the benchmark U.S. oil contract for July delivery was up 46 cents to $106.99 a barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange by 0555 GMT. On Thursday, the contract jumped $2.13, or 2 percent, to $106.53. Brent crude, a benchmark for international oils, was up 70 cents to $113.12 a barrel on the ICE Futures exchange in London.
The price of oil jumped Thursday as an insurgency in Iraq raised the risk of disruptions to supplies at a time when other major oil-producing countries are already pumping near capacity. The al-Qaida-inspired group that captured two key cities in Iraq earlier this week vowed Thursday to march on to Baghdad.
One of those two cities, Mosul, lies in an area that is a major gateway for Iraqi oil. While the loss of the city has no immediate effect on oil exports, now at over 3 million barrels a day, it adds to concerns over security and the country's plans to expand oil production.
West Texas Intermediate, the benchmark U.S. oil, rose $2.13, or 2 percent, to close at $106.53 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange. Brent crude, a benchmark for international oils, rose more sharply, gaining $3.07, or 2.8 percent, to $113.02 a barrel on the ICE Futures exchange in London.
Oil rose to near $106 per barrel Thursday as an insurgency in Iraq raised the risk of disruption to supplies after OPEC vowed to keep output unchanged.
Benchmark U.S. oil for July delivery was up $1.45 to $105.85 a barrel at 1010 GMT in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. On Wednesday, the contract added 5 cents to close at $104.40.
Brent crude, a benchmark for international oils, was up $2.08 to $111.44 a barrel on the ICE exchange in London.
The movements of Iraqi militants to secure larger portions of northern Iraq hasn't had much impact on oil futures yet, but oil-trading advisory firm Ritterbusch & Associates said that could change if the government can't retake control of the country, The Wall Street Journal reports.
NEW YORK (AP) — The world oil market has set up quite nicely for OPEC.
Dramatic changes in oil production around the globe are balancing each other out instead of wreaking havoc. This has helped world oil prices stay high enough to provide OPEC countries with robust income, but not so high that they scare customers away from buying more of their precious product.
Brent crude, the most important international oil benchmark, has hovered in the range of $110 per barrel over much of the last 4 years, with remarkably low volatility for oil markets. That has also led to stable gasoline prices for U.S. drivers, who have been paying in the neighborhood of $3.50 per gallon over the period.
The price of oil bounced around before finishing with a slight gain Wednesday. U.S. supplies declined more than expected, but a reduction in the World Bank's estimate of global economic growth raised concerns about demand.
Benchmark U.S. oil for July delivery rose 5 cents to $104.40 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange.
Brent crude gained 43 cents to $109.95 a barrel on the ICE Futures exchange in London. The benchmark for international oils got a boost from tensions in Iraq.
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