West Texas Intermediate advanced for a third day, the longest rising streak in more than three weeks, after an industry report showed crude stockpiles fell at the biggest U.S. oil-storage hub. Brent gained as an ambush of Ukrainian government troops fanned tension with Russia.
Futures climbed as much as 0.5 percent in New York. Crude inventories at Cushing, the delivery point for WTI, shrank by 590,000 barrels last week, the American Petroleum Institute said yesterday. Supplies nationwide were probably unchanged at 397.6 million, near a record high, a Bloomberg News survey showed before Energy Information Administration data today. Ukraine is fighting an “undeclared war” with Russia, according to Acting Defense Minister Mykhaylo Koval.
“Prices have gained momentum from reports showing a draw-down in Cushing inventories,” Amrita Sen, chief oil market strategist at Energy Aspects Ltd., a research company in London, said by e-mail. The declines are “taking Cushing stocks close to operational minimum levels.”
WTI for June delivery increased as much as 48 cents to $102.18 in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange and was at $102.05 at 12:58 p.m. London time. The contract gained $1.11 to $101.70 yesterday, the highest close since April 24. The volume of all futures traded was about 3 percent above the 100-day average for the time of day. Prices have advanced 3.7 percent this year.
Brent for June settlement, which expires tomorrow, climbed as much as 57 cents, or 0.5 percent, to $109.81 a barrel on the London-based ICE Futures Europe exchange. The European benchmark crude traded at a premium of $7.69 to WTI on ICE. The more-active July contract was up 39 cents at $108.93.