All data is delayed
See More

Oil prices slip from three-month highs

Aug 17 2012 18:54
London - World oil prices fell on Friday on profit-taking following recent gains which saw New York and Brent crude hit three-month highs, analysts said.

Brent North Sea crude for delivery in October dropped $1.27 to $114 a barrel.

New York's main contract, West Texas Intermediate (WTI) light sweet crude for September, slipped 39 cents to $95.21 a barrel.

Prices on Thursday reached the highest levels since May on encouraging economic figures in top crude consumer the United States, traders said.

New York hit $95.69 a barrel and Brent $117.03 - although the Brent price was for its September contract which expired at the close of trading on Thursday.

"Brent has fallen... and is thus priced three dollars lower than at close of trading yesterday," said analysts at Commerzbank.

"The drop in price is largely the result of the contract rollover. The October contract, which from today represents the reference price, was trading $2.5 lower than the September contract at the time of the rollover," they added in a research note.

Oil prices meanwhile spiked Thursday thanks to a brighter demand outlook for the world's biggest economy.

Weekly numbers for new unemployment insurance claims, an indicator of the pace of layoffs, came in as expected and in the same range of the past four months.

Elsewhere, July data on new US housing construction, although slightly down from June, gave a picture of an industry steadily picking up pace.

Oil prices had also rallied on Wednesday after the US Energy Information Administration said crude inventories plunged 3.7 million barrels in the week to August 10, far heavier than the market had expected. Falling US inventories indicate stronger demand.

Prices have also won support this week from fresh hopes of more economic stimulus measures by central banks - and notably by the central bank in commodities-hungry China.

Crude futures were also lifted by Middle East unrest and tight North Sea crude supplies, traders said.

market  |  commodites  |  oil



Read Fin24’s Comments Policy publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Company Snapshot

We're Talking About...

Savings Month

It's never too late to start saving. Visit our special issue and add your voice.

Money Clinic

Money Clinic
Do you have a question about your finances? We'll get an expert opinion.
Click here...

Voting Booth

The proposal to nationalise SARB will

Previous results · Suggest a vote