09 May 2013 16:41 [Source: ICIS news]
LONDON (ICIS)--NYMEX light-sweet crude oil futures weakened by more than $1.00/bbl on Thursday pressured by a firmer US dollar and narrowing of the Brent/WTI price spread.
By 15:08 GMT, the front-month June NYMEX WTI contract touched an intra-day low at $95.35/bbl, a loss of $1.27/bbl compared with the previous close. The contract then edged higher to trade around $95.50/bbl.
At the same time the front-month, June ICE Brent contract was trading around $103.70/bbl, having touched an intra-day low at $103.45/bbl, a loss of 89 cents/bbl compared with the close on Wednesday.
Prices were also pressured by the fall in initial claims for unemployment benefits in the US. Although this news initially appears to be supportive, investors are concerned that the US Federal Reserve will take this as a signal to curb back its monetary policies.
Adding to the bearish sentiment, the US Energy Information Administration published its weekly stock report showing US crude oil stocks had risen to a fresh record high last week on rising imports into the US.
US imports of foreign crude, particularly those linked to Brent have become cheaper in recent weeks as the Brent/WTI price spread has narrowed from around $20/bbl in mid-February to below $8.00/bbl.
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