Brent up $1/bbl as US dollar weakens, Irish debt worries ease

19 November 2010 10:08  [Source: ICIS news]

SINGAPORE (ICIS)--Brent crude futures gained more than $1/bbl on Friday as the US dollar continued to weaken and economic worries eased following news of a EU-led plans to tackle Ireland’s debt problem.

At 09:35 GMT, January Brent on London’s ICE futures was trading at $86.03/bbl, up $0.98/bbl on the previous close. Earlier, the North Sea benchmark hit a session high of $86.15/bbl, up $1.10/bbl.

December NYMEX light sweet crude futures were trading at $82.69/bbl, up $0.84/bbl on the previous close. Earlier, the US crude hit a session high of  $82.75/bbl, up $0.90/bbl. The December contact will expire at the close of business in New York on Friday.

The US dollar continued to decline against leading currencies on Friday, as the US Federal Reserve defended its quantitative easing plans following criticisms from other nations. The decline in the value of the US dollar made dollar denominated commodities such as crude more attractive to overseas investors.

The market was also buoyed by news that experts from the EU and the International Monetary Fund (IMF) are to meet in Dublin to set out rescue plans to deal with Ireland's huge debt problems.

Crude prices slumped to their lowest levels since late October earlier this week on demand concerns following government announcements of planned anti-inflationary measures in China and worries over debt levels in the eurozone.

However, the subsequent and ongoing slide in the value of the US dollar and large drawdowns in US crude and oil product inventories has since provided upward momentum for crude.

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By: James Dennis
+65 6780 4359

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