Oil prices rebound before US energy report

Wednesday 05 February 2014 14.52
Very cold weather in the US boosting demand for heating fuel
Very cold weather in the US boosting demand for heating fuel

Global oil prices recovered today, winning support from firmer stock markets and the weaker dollar before the latest snapshot of US crude inventories, dealers said.

US benchmark West Texas Intermediate (WTI) for delivery in March advanced 87 cents to $98.04 a barrel.

Brent North Sea crude for March rose 44 cents to $106.22 a barrel in London deals.

The weaker greenback makes dollar-priced crude cheaper for buyers using stronger currencies. That tends to stimulate demand and push prices higher.

The US government's Energy Information Administration (EIA) will publish its update on oil reserves for the week ending January 31 later today.

Expectations of a decline in US crude stockpiles at its delivery port in Cushing, Oklahoma, have helped push prices higher, as a drop would indicate stronger demand in the world's biggest economy, analysts said.

Traders said the market was also boosted today as cold weather in the US lifts demand for heating fuel. Winter-weary Americans were braced for another massive storm that is expected to dump as much as a foot of snow and a dangerous mix of freezing rain and sleet on a huge swath of the country.