Crude prices gain on data, forecasts
The price of crude oil was higher in afternoon trade on Tuesday, with August contracts for West Texas Intermediate adding $1.95 to $76.90 per barrel by around 1:30 p.m. local time on the New York Mercantile Exchange, while at last report Brent crude had gained $2.15 to $76.52 per barrel on the ICE Futures Europe exchange in London.
The gains came as equities markets advanced after aluminium producer Alcoa (NYSE: AA) reported a better second quarter result than had been anticipated, and on a report from the International Energy Agency which predicted that oil demand will rise by 1.3 million barrels per day to 87.8 million barrels per day globally next year.
Advances also came ahead of tomorrow’s Energy Information Administration US inventories report, which two separate surveys say analysts expect will show that crude oil stockpiles fell between 2 and 2.6 million barrels last week, but that both gasoline and distillates inventories were up during the week.
Nymex August gasoline futures were up 4 cents to $2.07 per gallon in afternoon trade, while August heating oil futures added 5 cents to $2.04 per gallon but August natural gas dropped 2 cents to $4.36 per million British thermal units.
The retail price of a gallon of regular unleaded gasoline in the United States fell slightly overnight to $2.713 per gallon on average nationally.
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