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Oil gives back early gains, settles lower

Oil gives back early gains, settles lower

Oil prices fell back on Thursday, after getting an early boost from lower U.S. jobless claims and crude inventories.
Benchmark oil for October delivery lost 42 cents to settle at $74.25 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange.
The Labor Department said new claims for unemployment benefits dropped by 27,000 last week, more than economists expected. That helped push stock prices up in early trading as the stock market rose. Energy traders have been watching the direction of stocks for signs of confidence in the economy, which could increase oil and gas demand.
The Energy Department's Energy Information Administration said crude inventories fell by 1.9 million barrels last week from the week before. Analysts surveyed by Platts, the energy information arm of McGraw-Hill Cos., expected a drop of 730,000 barrels. Supplies of gasoline and distillates fell as well.
Platts senior oil analyst Linda Rafield said last week's drop in crude supplies may be short-lived and due mostly to Hurricane Earl interrupting import deliveries along the Atlantic and Gulf Coasts, rather than a significant uptick in demand. "This week's data suggests imports will roar back in the next set of numbers, and unwinding the crude stock draw." she said.
U.S. oil supplies are at a 30-year high and that weighs on prices. "Truth be told, nothing would be better for American economic recovery than genuinely cheap oil," energy consultants Cameron Hanover said in a daily report to investors. "We have never had a strong economic recovery without cheap oil _ nor have we ever had cheap oil without dramatic U.S. growth."
Natural gas prices continued to sink after the Energy Department said supplies expanded again last week, by 58 billion cubic feet. The amount of gas in storage is now 5.5 percent above the five-year average. Natural gas for October delivery fell 4.6 cents to settle at $3.768 per 1,000 cubic feet on the Nymex.
In other trading in October contracts, heating oil gave up 1.33 cents to settle at $2.0684 a gallon and gasoline lost 0.4 cent to settle at $1.9354 a gallon.
In London, Brent crude fell 70 cents to settle at $77.47 on the ICE Futures exchange.


Updated : 2021-06-22 13:21 GMT+08:00