Oil has biggest weekly gain this year
Author:Network sources Source:Network sources Date:2013-04-28

OIL rose more than 5 percent this week, even with a decline on Friday, as traders concluded last week's dive to a low for the year was overdone.


The price of oil slipped yesterday after a report showing that growth picked up in the US economy last quarter, but not as much as expected. Benchmark oil for June delivery fell 64 cents to US$93 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange.


Still, oil rose US$4.99 a barrel this week. The 5.6 percent increase was the largest weekly gain of the year. After oil hit a low of US$86.68 last week, traders seems to look for reasons to buy. They found a few: a sharp drop in US gasoline supplies, positive data on US hiring and increased speculation for a rate cut by Europe's Central Bank.


But the broad economic picture suggests that oil demand will remain constrained in the near-term. The US government on yesterday estimated that the economy grew at annual rate of 2.5 percent from January through March. But the markets were expecting growth of 3 percent or better. The US figure follows last week's report of slower-than-expected growth in China.


Brent crude, which is used to price oil from the North Sea used by many US refiners, dropped 25 cents to US$103.16 a barrel on the ICE Futures exchange in London.


In other energy futures trading on the Nymex:


- Gasoline rose 2 cents to US$2.83 per gallon.


- Heating oil was flat at US$2.90 a gallon.


- Natural gas lost 2 cents to US$4.15 per 1,000 cubic feet.

 

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