Crude oil climbs with Middle East tension

Nov. 16, 2012 at 6:31 PM   |   Comments

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NEW YORK, Nov. 16 (UPI) -- Crude oil prices climbed 1 percent Friday, closing in on $87 a barrel with traders focused on supplies due to tension in the Middle East.

Rising tension between Hamas and Israel has injected a fresh undercurrent of concern in commodities markets.

At the same time a weekly Energy Information Administration stockpile report delayed by one day due to Monday's Veterans Day holiday, said crude oil inventories rose by 1.1 million barrels in the week to 375.9 million barrels. On the other hand, distillate fuel stocks, which includes home heating oil, were down 2.5 million barrels in the week, just as a wintry chill set in over much of the country.

On the New York Mercantile Exchange, West Texas Intermediate crude oil added $1.08 cents to $86.98 per barrel. Reformulated blendstock gasoline gained 0.44 cents to $2.7145 per gallon overnight. Home heating oil prices added 0.67 cents to $2.9801 per gallon.

Natural gas prices added 0.5 cents to $3.785 per million British thermal units.

At the pump, the national average price of unleaded gasoline fell to $3.43 per gallon from Thursday's $3.438, AAA said.

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