Crude prices top $82 per barrel
Crude oil prices were up again on Tuesday, hitting a 12-week high above $82 per barrel after the US dollar weakened, making oil purchases less expensive for those using other currencies.
The gains came even though equities markets were lower in Europe and the US, and although the US Commerce Department reported that consumer spending did not rise in June, while personal incomes in the US also stagnated and individuals saved money at their highest rate in a year.
In addition, pending home sales fell in the US in June, while in the same month US factor orders were down by 1.2 percent.
September contracts for West Texas Intermediate crude were up 83 cents to $82.17 per barrel at just past 1 p.m. on the New York Mercantile Exchange,, while at last report Brent crude was up $1.47 to $82.29 per barrel on the ICE Futures Europe exchange in London.
The US Energy Information Administration is due to release its weekly inventories report Wednesday, with the report expected to show that crude oil and gasoline stockpiles both declined last week.
Nymex September gasoline futures added 2 cents to $2.18 per gallon in early afternoon trade, while September heating oil futures were up 4 cents to $2.19 per gallon and September natural gas futures gained 3 cents to $4.73 per million British thermal units.
Meanwhile, the retail price for a gallon of regular unleaded gasoline in the US dropped slightly overnight to $2.726 per gallon on average nationally.