Alexa

Oil prices steady near US$96 a barrel ahead of US oil inventory data

Oil prices steady near US$96 a barrel ahead of US oil inventory data

Oil prices were steady ahead of the release later Thursday of U.S. fuel inventory data expected to show crude stockpiles fell last week.
Light, sweet crude for February delivery was unchanged at US$95.97 a barrel in Asian electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange, midmorning in Singapore.
The contract had jumped US$1.84 on Wednesday as traders braced for what was expected to be the sixth straight decline in U.S. crude stockpiles in the report to be released by the Energy Department.
Futures also got a lift on news of a Turkish airstrike Wednesday on Kurdish rebel shelters in northern Iraq.
The warplanes hit eight rebel caves and other hideouts inside Iraq after detecting a group of rebels preparing to spend the winter in the hideouts, the Turkish military said. Turkey's escalating cross-border war against separatists has raised concerns that the conflict would cut oil supplies from the region.
In the weekly inventory data, oil supplies are expected to fall by 1.2 million barrels, according to the mean of forecasts by analysts in a Dow Jones Newswires survey. The drop is expected because of a decline in imports that market watchers blame in part on fog that kept tankers outside the Houston Ship Channel last week.
Distillate inventories, which include heating oil and diesel fuel, are seen falling by about 600,000 barrels, according to the analysts' average, while gasoline stockpiles are expected to rise by 1.6 million barrels.
Refinery use is seen increasing by 0.6 percentage point to 88.4 percent of capacity.
Many analysts expect oil futures to trade in a narrow range for the duration of the holidays. Crude futures have in recent weeks held generally to a range between US$87 and US$95, leading some analysts to conclude some investors may be poised to make another push for US$100 a barrel in the new year.
Heating oil futures rose a tad to US$2.6415 a gallon (3.8 liters) while gasoline prices dropped 0.11 cent to US$2.4515 a gallon.
In London, February Brent crude futures rose 6 cents to US$94 a barrel on the ICE Futures exchange.


Updated : 2020-12-03 12:10 GMT+08:00