Arab Today, arab today oil prices rise on supply worries and us data
Last Updated : GMT 21:47:39
Arab Today, arab today
Arab Today, arab today

Oil prices rise on supply worries and US data

Arab Today, arab today

Arab Today, arab today Oil prices rise on supply worries and US data

New York - Arabstoday

Oil prices rose for a fifth straight day on Friday, on concerns about potential supply disruptions in Iran and Iraq and recent signs of a strengthening US economy. Trading volumes were thinned in a shortened session ahead of the Christmas holiday. Oil also found support from stronger equities on Wall Street, with the S&P 500 index turning positive for the year in a four-day rally to end up for the week, on the recent better-than-expected economic data. \"It\'s very thin trading, but stronger equities are helping oil stay up,\" said Chris Dillman, analyst at Tradition Energy in Stamford, Connecticut. Article continues below The government on Friday said new US single-family home sales rose to a seven-month high in November, with the supply on the market at the lowest in 5-1/2 years. The home-sales report and Thursday\'s data showing a fall in initial jobless claims last week helped offset a separate report on Friday showing consumer spending fell for a second straight month. Geopolitical uncertainty, especially in Iraq and Iran, also kept investors focused on potential threats to supply. Brent February crude rose 7 cents to settle at $107.96 (Dh396.21) a barrel. For the week, Brent rose 4.46 per cent, breaking a string of two weekly losses and posting its biggest weekly percentage gain since the week to October 14, according to Reuters data. US February crude rose 15 cents to settle at $99.68 a barrel, reaching $100.23 intraday. Front-month US crude rose 6.57 per cent for the week, the biggest weekly gain since the week to October 28. Speculators Crude trading volumes were very thin ahead of the Christmas holiday and the approaching New Year. US dealings were 76 per cent below the 30-day average and Brent 69 per cent under its 30-day average. Speculators cut their net long positions in US crude oil futures and options in the week to December 20, data from the US Commodity Futures Trading Commission showed on Friday. The spread between Brent and US crude narrowed to $8.28 a barrel based on settlements, and fell as low as $7.60 intraday. The US Congress passed legislation containing a provision aimed at forcing a quicker decision by President Obama on the Keystone XL pipeline. Analysts say the pipeline, from Canada to refinery and port facilities in Texas, would ease a supply glut at the Cushing, Oklahoma, delivery point for the US crude contract that has hemmed in prices for the US benchmark crude. The euro was little changed against the US dollar, but the dollar was on track to end the week lower against a currency basket. The recent encouraging data from the United States helped key industrial metal copper rise on Friday, but the ongoing worries about Europe\'s economy and the region\'s debt crisis limited gains. Iran\'s navy was expected to launch a 10-day war game in the Strait of Hormuz later yesterday, state TV said, raising concern about a possible closure of the key oil shipping route. In Iraq, a wave of bombings that killed in Baghdad on Thursday pointed to a deteriorating security situation just days after the last US troops left the country.  

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