Oil up as OPEC raises demand forecast

Tuesday 12 February 2013 18.23
Oil prices rise after OPEC raises global demand forecasts for 2013
Oil prices rise after OPEC raises global demand forecasts for 2013

The price of oil rose as OPEC upgraded its forecast for global demand and the Group of Seven industrial nations pledged not to devalue their currencies.

Benchmark oil gained 47 cents to $97.50 a barrel in afternoon trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange.

OPEC, the Vienna-based organization comprising many of the world's key oil exporters, raised its 2013 forecast for global demand to 89.7 million barrels - 80,000 barrels more than its previous forecast a month ago.

It cited "some signs of recovery in the global economy and colder weather at the start of this year."

It said about half of the demand increase over 2012 would come from China.

Oil prices were also supported by a rise in the euro against the dollar.

The increase makes it cheaper for European traders to buy crude oil, which is priced in dollars. Today the euro was up to $1.3459 from $1.3398 late Monday in New York.

The euro rose after the finance ministers from leading industrial nations, including the US, Japan and Germany, insisted they remained committed to exchange rates driven by the market - not government policy - and would consult closely when it comes to sharp movements in foreign currency markets.

Brent crude, used to price international varieties of oil, was up 10 cents to $118.23 a barrel on the ICE Futures exchange in London.

Keywords: oil, brent